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B’nai Sholom to plans Amos Oz focus; Prof. Rozett to lead sessions, film slated

AMOS OZ in Brussels  in 2005. Photo courtesy of  Michiel Hendryckx. File is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported

ALBANY–B’nai Sholom Reform Congregation in Albany will host a several programs to commemorate the brilliance and distinguished career of Amos Oz, one of Israel’s most prolific writers, according to organizersOz died in December 2018 at the age of 79.  All events in the series are open to the public.

“Amos Oz: Israel’s Storyteller,” a five-week course beginning Wednesday, Nov. 6, at 10:30 a.m.

will focus on three books: a memoir, a collection of short stories and a novel. It will be led by Martha Rozett, professor emerita at the University at Albany.

“A Tale of Love and Darkness,” a film written and directed by Natalie Portman, based on the Oz book, will be screened Saturday, Nov. 16, at 7:30 p.m.

 A discussion of Judas, Oz’s final novel, will take place after Shabbat services Friday, Dec. 13, as part of B’nai Sholom’s ongoing Synagogue Scholar series. Rozett will lead that discussion.

The five-week “Amos Oz: Israel’s Storyteller” will begin with excerpts from A Tale of Love and Darknessa memoir that traced Oz’s childhood and coming of age in the Jerusalem of the 1940s, as Israel was becoming a state.  It was recently selected by The New York Times as one of the 50 finest memoirs of the past 50 years. The next text, Between Friends, is a collection of linked stories inspired by Oz’s experience of living on a kibbutz.  The final class will review his 2014 novel Judasabout a young scholar probing the mysteries surrounding the biblical traitor, Judas.  In the opening sentences, Oz writes that this is a story set in Jerusalem in 1959-1960, a story “of error and desire, of unrequited love, and of a religious question that remains unresolved” —the question of Judas Iscariot’s relationship to Jesus.

Registration is required for “Amos Oz: Israel’s Storyteller.”  Fee is $25 for B’nai Sholom congregants and $30 for non members. Those planning to attend are aske  to acquire copies of all three books and read as them. 

The Nov. 16 movie and Dec. 13 Synagogue Scholar presentation are free.

The B’nai Sholom office: 518-482-5283 or can provide information.



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