National Endowment for the Arts - The Big Read
The Shawl

The Shawl

by Cynthia Ozick

Just as you can’t grasp anything without an opposable thumb, you can’t write anything without the aid of metaphor. Metaphor is the mind’s opposable thumb.

Cynthia Ozick (Copyright Nancy Crampton)

No event in modern history has inspired so many books as the Holocaust. This monumental atrocity has compelled thousands of writers to reexamine their notions of history, humanity, morality, and even theology. None of these books, however, is quite like Cynthia Ozick's The Shawl—a remarkable feat of fiction which starts in darkest despair and brings us, without simplification or condescension, to a glimmer of redemption.

Note: The Shawl is copyright © 1980 by Cynthia Ozick. Originally published in The New Yorker From The Shawl by Cynthia Ozick (Vintage, 1990). Used by permission of Melanie Jackson Agency, L.L.C.

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