Controversial Israeli novel to hit the US market

Dorit Rabinyan's 'Borderlife' was banned by the Education Ministry.

March 31, 2017 20:38
1 minute read.
Author Dorit Rabinyan holding her controversial book 'Borderlife.'

Author Dorit Rabinyan holding her controversial book 'Borderlife.'. (photo credit: AFP PHOTO)


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Dorit Rabinyan’s book created a firestorm in Israel several years ago – and now it’s heading for the United States.

The book, Gader Haya (Borderlife), was first published in 2014, and tells the story of a love affair between an Israeli woman and a Palestinian man living in New York. The book ended up being banned from school reading lists by the Education Ministry and ignited a controversy which led to, ironically, its soaring popularity.

Next month, a translation by Jessica Cohen will hit the shelves in the US, published by Penguin/Random House under the title All the Rivers. The translation was released in the UK earlier this month.

The book made headlines in late 2015 with the ministry’s decision.

Explaining the move at the time, a representative of the minister’s pedagogical committee said: “We decided that, because this is a sensitive time and because this is a very contemporary piece, it is not suitable to study this as a requirement.

In conversations with teachers, there were fears that it could cause some harm among a portion of students.”

Since the controversy did wonders for sales in Israel, the US publisher is marketing the book as “banned from classrooms” in Israel.

Other novels by the award-winning Rabinyan were also translated in English.

Lidar Gravé-Lazi and Jerusalem Post staff contributed to this report.

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