The greatest tale

Shmuel Yosef Agnon is considered by many to be the father of modern Hebrew literature.

May 24, 2012 10:27
SY Agnon's library

SY Agnon's library. (photo credit: Beit Agnon)


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Shmuel Yosef Agnon is considered by many to be the father of modern Hebrew literature. His stories and novels have enveloped the Jewish people for more than a century. Agnon’s first book, And the Crooked Shall Be Made Straight, was published exactly 100 years ago by the Labor Zionist newspaper Hapoel Hatzair in 1912. Published in installments, the book was Agnon’s ticket to the literary world, one which was filled with a uniquely biblical language that colored the characters and scenes of stories rooted in both Eastern Europe and the modern State of Israel.

Agnon wrote over 1,000 stories in his lifetime, some as long as 500 pages and others just a page, most of which were published after he died. But like every great writer, there stands behind Agnon an array of people and places that have contributed to his lasting influence and success in the world of literature.


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