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Five Selves


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About the Author

Emanuela Barasch-Rubinstein is a writer and a scholar in the Humanities. Her parents fled their homes in Eastern Europe and emigrated to Israel, and Emanuela was born in Jerusalem. Her father was the art historian Moshe Barasch. Emanuela has also published scholarly books on the cultural perception of Nazism.


PUBLISHERS WEEKLY STARRED REVIEW: "Barasch-Rubinstein's collection of five splendid novellas explores Israeli identity and self-awareness. While preoccupied with different issues-grief and privacy, inflexibility and a changing work culture, generational rift, and a phobia-characters are interconnected in the literature through their common search for personal insight. The strongest entry, "Aura," is the surrealistic narrative of a hospitalized man who drifts in and out of consciousness and recognition, providing moments of enlightenment and horror. Barasch-Rubinstein's lean, beautiful writing prevents the characters from overstating emotion, and avoids any melodrama. In "A Bird Flight," a woman fends off unwelcome and intrusive attention from a man who's trying to deal with his mother's demise and tactlessly probes for minutiae about the woman's father's recent death. A young Israeli woman contemplates her Israeli-born mother and European grandmother in "Earrings," a meditation on generational and cultural differences. A teacher with an outdated, rigid teaching style spirals out of control when a more charismatic instructor takes her place in "The Grammar Teacher." And a young man's debilitating fear of dogs, combined with his shame and fear of discovery, consume his daily life in "Watch Dog," which brings a fresh understanding to phobias. This anthology is a highly visual, spiritual gem."; 'These stories are brilliant and highly original. They movingly depict the inner lives of the characters, and the impact is as gripping and dramatic as any thriller.' Miriam Gross, formerly Literary Editor The Sunday Telegraph;'The stories are important in the way they portray the intricate formation of an Israeli identity, and shed new light in the complexity of Israeli life; yet they go beyond this, revealing a profound understanding of wider human - and humanistic - themes and a fresh, significant artistic voice.'; Aharon Appelfeld; "...these monologues, captured at a moment of crisis, are written with an affecting, powerful intelligence and shot through with emotional intensity. A memorable and singular voice." The Mail on Sunday: Best New Fiction

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