Page 110 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 4

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JEWISH BOOK ANNUAL
98
author, who is non-Jewish, the main theme of the novel is not inter-
marriage but anti-Semitic prejudice.
But despite Miss Graham’s interesting novel, her story will be taken
not as an exceptional story of the love and marriage of two individuals
of different faiths, bu t as a pa t tern of happy adjustment for all.
Earth
and High Heaven
, however, ends where the real problem of intermarriage
begins — after marriage.
Marc is Jewish only in a negative sense, he has pride and will not give
up his Jewishness. But otherwise Jewishness has very little meaning or
relation to his life. I f Erica’s Christianity is as vaporous and tenuous as
Marc’s Jewishness, their children will become “Canadians” in both the
ethnic and religious sense, with Canadian nationalism taking the place
of religion. I f Christianity means something positive to Erica, the chil-
dren of Marc and Erica, will become Christians, or will live in a world
peopled by other half-Jews and half-Christians.
— S a m u e l D i n i n i n
The Reconstructionist
Behold the Jew.
B y A
da
J
a c k s o n
.
New York,
M
a cm i l l a n
,
1944.
24 pages. $1.00.
Ada Jackson — who is well-known in England, having won the National
Poetry Prize in 1933, and who has also made her mark in this country
in the columns of
This Week
and elsewhere — was last year awarded the
Greenwood Prize for
Behold the Jew.
I t is a metrical trumpet blast, a moving, passionate vindication of the
Jew, all the more emphatic in tha t the author is a non-Jew. Beginning,
in a subdued key, with an invocation to God in behalf of the hunted Jew,
this poem sways and sweeps to heights of emotional tenseness, taking in
the thunderous Biblical patriarchs, the glories of ancient Israel, the cen-
turies studded with luminous Jewish names in medicine and music,
mathematics and the humanities — down through the entire road to the
bitterness of these days.
The cavalcade, approaching our own times, becomes defined with
Mahler
,
Schonberg, Meyerbeer;
Offenbach and Rubinstein
,
Milhaud
,
yea
and Mendelssohn.
Bialik, Zweig, and Epstein are included. Nor are the humble folk
forgotten:
The tailors and the sempstresses,
the men with shop and market stall . . .
the little men whose like this day
are bleeding from the earth away.
The tyrannies of the Nazis are listed. Then, in a final gesture, the
poetess offers the Jew her most tremendous weapon — the logos, the
flaming, kinetic word turned power:
I have my words.
I give them to you, full and free
. . . till men awake to brotherhood
and the Jew comes to his own.
H a r r y
E.
W e d e c k i n
The National Jewish Monthly