Praise

“Schor brings to life the complicated, passionate woman who left us our proudest national image. A work of great empathy an meticulous historical research.”
–Kevin Baker, author of Paradise Alley

“In this luminous, enthralling biography, Esther Schor recovers one of the outstanding women of nineteenth-century letters, who while inventing her life as an American Jewish writer discovered a larger poetic mission for the entire nation.”
–Sean Wilentz, author of The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln

“Esther Schor, herself a poet of authentic distinction, has composed a very moving and highly useful biographical critique of Emma Lazarus, a permanent poet in American and in Jewish tradition.”
–Harold Bloom, author of The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages

“It is a rare book indeed that so skillfully melds biography, literary analysis, and cultural history. In describing Emma Lazarus and her circle, Schor tells the story of American Jewry in the nineteenth century, paints a portrait of literary New York in one of its heydays, explicates many beautiful and long-neglected poems, and instills in us a canny affection for a subject who is forceful and sometimes overbearing but also brilliant and compassionate. Schor’s prose is as lyrical and rich in images as the poetry she describes in this intimate, often touching volume.”
–Andrew Solomon, author of The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression

Table Of Contents

Prologue: Emma Lazarus and the Three Anne Franks

I · 1849–1876
Generations
The Shadow of Victory
Footsteps in Newport
Your Professor, My Poet
Admetus
Oldport
A Place in Parnassus
Thoreau’s Compass

I I · 1876–1881
In the Studio
The Woman as She Really Was
Conundrums
Awakening
An Ancient, Well-Remembered Pain
The Critic’s Only Duty
The Devil Discovered
Fresh Vitality in Every Direction
Progress and Poverty

I I I · 1882–1883
Russian Jewish Horrors
Shylocks and Spinozas
The List of Singers
A Single Thought & a Single Work
An Army of Jewish Paupers
The Semite and the Hebrews
The Poet of the Podolian Ghetto
Seeds Sown

IV · 1883–1887
The Other Half (as It Were) of Our Little World-Ball
Mother of Exiles
Revolution as the Only Hope
The Inward Dissonance
The Vacant Chair
Passing Phantoms
December Roses
The Mattress-Grave
Sibyl Judaica
But If She Herself Were Here Today . . .

Appendix: Texts of the Poems
Chronology
Notes
Sources
Acknowledgments
Index

Product Details

Also by Esther Schor

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