18: Jewish Stories Translated from 18 Languages

This anthology, the first of this kind in twenty-five years, collects eighteen astounding works of Jewish fiction.

This is the first anthology of translated multilingual Jewish fiction in 25 years: a collection of 18 splendid stories, each translated into English from a different language: Albanian, Croatian, Czech, Danish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Italian, Ladino, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Turkish, and Yiddish. These compelling, humorous, and moving stories, written by eminent authors that include Shmuel Yosef Agnon, Isaac Babel, and Lili Berger, reflect both the diversities and the commonalities within Jewish culture, and will make you laugh, cry, and think. This beautiful book is easily accessible and enjoyable not only for Jewish readers, but for story-lovers of all backgrounds.

Authors (in the order they appear in the book) include: Elie Wiesel, Varda Fiszbein, S. Y. Agnon, Gábor T. Szántó, Jasminka Domaš, Augusto Segre, Lili Berger, Peter Sichrovsky, Maciej Płaza, Entela Kasi, Norman Manea, Luize Valente, Eliya Karmona, Birte Kont, Michel Fais, Irena Dousková, Mario Levi, and Isaac Babel.

Media & Events

“The result is a sometimes funny, sometimes sad, and always thoughtful collection that shows the similarities and differences in Jewish life across cultures, languages, and countries.”: The New York Times’ Wirecutter team recommends 18: Jewish Stories Translated from 18 Languages as a great Hanukkah gift idea this holiday.

A feature article about Nora Gold in the Jerusalem Post, about her books, her activism, and her life.

Nora Gold speaks with the Jewish Book Council Paper Brigade Daily’s Simona Zaretsky to discuss 18, Jewish Fiction .net, translation, and the multilingualism of Jewish fiction itself.

What Makes a Book Jewish?: 18 Nora Gold reflects on Jewishness in fiction for Hadassah Magazine.

Compelling Jewish Reads to Kick off the New Year from  Hadassah Magazine: “For Gold, the founding editor of JewishFiction .net, a Jewish story is one that expresses Jewish identity in some dimension and relates to the Jewish experience.”

Check out 18: Jewish Stories Translated from 18 Languages on the Jewish Book Council’s Jewish Book Council Bookshelf: Recommending Reading for Fall 2023.

Learn about Nora Gold’s history as a writer, as well as the roots of 18, in an interview from Authority Magazine.

Read an excerpt of 18 via The Miramichi Reader: : “Golem” by Maciej Płaza, translated from Polish by Antonia Lloyd-Jones.

Nora Gold discusses the story behind 18, misconceptions of Jewish literature, and more in an interview by Book Q&As with Deborah Kalb.

Read an excerpt of 18 via the River Street Writing blog: “The Guest” by Varda Fiszbein, translated from Spanish by Andrea G. Labinger.

Hear an interview with Nora Gold about 18 on Spanish radio, on Radio Sefarad’s English Corner, with Linda Jimenez Glassman.

Learn more about 18 and international Jewish culture from Nora Gold on the Martini Judaism podcast:

On the ASP Blog:


Praise

 

“What a treasure!”
Alberto Manguel

“Jewish Fiction .net founder Gold (The Dead Man) collects a remarkably diverse array of translated Jewish stories and novel excerpts that appeared in English for the first time on the site. Because “Jews have lived for two thousand years scattered among other nations,” Jewish fiction “has been written in the languages of virtually every country,” writes Gold, who ventures beyond the expected (Yiddish, Hebrew) to spotlight stories originally published in Croatian, Hungarian, Italian, Turkish, and more. Gold includes some Jewish literary stars; an excerpt from Elie Wiesel’s Hostage, for example, finds writer Shaltiel Feigenberg slipping into an out-of-body state after he’s captured by pro-Palestinian terrorists. But the real treats come from lesser-known authors who push the envelope in surprising ways, such as Croatian Jasminka Domaš’s ethereal, creepy “Purimspiel,” which features the disappearance of a reclusive woman who idolizes the biblical Queen Esther, and Italian Augusto Segre’s “Purchase of Goods of Dubious Origin,” which explores the aftermath of a shopkeeper’s business mistake. This broad and wide-ranging anthology is a fitting ode to the “nearly inexhaustible richness and strength” of the Jewish multilingual tradition.”
Publishers Weekly

“Nora Gold is a remarkable pioneer in the harvesting of Jewish literature, and her 18: Jewish Stories Translated from 18 Languages is a landmark anthology destined to illumine and stir new generations of readers.”
Cynthia Ozick

“This book by Nora Gold is like a treasure chest of marvels, each story a gem from a different time and place. There are living marvels here from so many times and places and voices and experiences that every reader’s idea of Jewish literature will have to be fargresert un farbesert—enlarged and improved.”
Dara Horn, award-winning author of People Love Dead Jews and Eternal Life

“Rich and varied, 18: Jewish Stories Translated from 18 Languages reminds us how diverse the Jewish experience is. For anyone interested in Jewish literature, it’s a must-read book and an important addition to the Jewish literary canon.”
Joshua Henkin, Winner of the Edward Lewis Wallant Award for American Jewish Fiction

“With this remarkable book, Dr. Gold makes a signal contribution to the current state and study of contemporary Jewish literature. Her anthology offers readers a world tour of Jewish literatures in one volume: 18 works that are of consistently high quality and represent numerous linguistic traditions. I know of no other anthology like this. It deserves significant critical attention and certainly will be of interest to teachers, students, and readers of Jewish literature, comparative literature, and world literature.”
Adam Rovner, Ph.D., Associate Professor of English & Jewish Literature, and Director, Center for Judaic Studies, University of Denver

“One thing is for certain: whether winners of the Nobel Prize or secret scribblers in remote Eastern European shtetls (or both), these writers have clung to their Judaism as if to their very being. Yet, ironically, it is this clinging to identity which makes this collection so universal. They are saying that, in all of the best and worst circumstances, this is who we are and who we shall remain. Nothing can change that. What a treat it is to ‘hear’ the voices from far and wide affirming our humanity.”

Joseph Kertes, Winner of a Canadian National Jewish Book Award and the U.S. National Jewish
Book Award for Fiction

“With editorial aplomb and resourcefulness, Gold has selected a wide variety of stories culled from the Jewish Diaspora. To shift the Biblical paradigm, one could also imagine the multicoloured mosaic on the cover as a Joseph’s coat of many colours whose fabric is on display in each of these stories. That garment may be torn or mended – stitched together and stretched across the linguistic spectrum of the Diaspora. … From the Tower of Babel to Isaac Babel, Nora Gold’s 18 is a treasure-trove of translated stories.”
Michael Greenstein, The Miramichi Reader