Yes. Israel is not only about falafel, Middle-Eastern delights and highly recognizable Israeli music. The land of milk and honey has a long history in literature, and we’d like to take this opportunity to share with you some of the best Israeli writers and authors of the modern time. Don’t worry, we’re not going to mention those who wrote antique parts of the Kabbalah, even though some of them truly deserve it.
In this article, you’re going to get to know some of the most well-known and talented writers from Israel. Writers that have conquered many hearts all over the globe through the fantastic worlds they have created or through the breathtaking research they successfully did.
Are you ready? So find the closest bookshop, grab a pen and a paper, take some notes and prepare yourself to go to that store right after you finish reading this article. Believe me, you’ll want to start diving into the pages of these books as soon as possible.
Meet the Israeli men and women behind the bestsellers
A few weeks ago we mentioned a few great ways to learn Hebrew faster and better than your neighbors. In that article we talked a bit about Israeli literature, but today we are taking this subject one step further. Today, we want to introduce you to some of the bests authors from the world of Israeli literature. Ready? Here we go!
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Yuval Noah Harari
Yuval Noah Harari is well known everywhere. His sociological and anthropological studies are breathtaking and have turned him into a best seller all over the world. He is a professor in the Department of History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and the author of ‘Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind’, ‘Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow’, and ‘21 Lessons for the 21st Century’, among others. Besides writing amazingly well and being translated into several languages, he has given a few very interesting TED talks that you must watch.
Amos Oz was born in 1939 and passed away recently, in December of 2018. Oz was an Israeli writer, novelist, journalist, and intellectual. Just like Yuval Noah Harari, Amos Oz was also a professor. He taught Hebrew literature at Ben-Gurion University in the Negev. He wrote over 30 books which were translated into a number of languages. Among his most praised titles you can find ‘Judas’, ‘To love a woman’, ‘A tale of love and darkness’, ‘Help us divorce’, and ‘A perfect peace’. Amos Oz was an activist for peace who always believed in – and fought for – a two-state solution. He touched the hearts of many, all around the globe. Amos Oz will be truly missed, and more than a writer, he became a legend.
The amazing and young David Grossman has written more than 20 books. His titles have been translated into more than 30 languages, and have won numerous prizes for his phenomenal work. His book ‘Someone to run with’ has sold thousands of copies all over the world! Among his titles you can find ‘See under: Love’, ‘Her body knows’, ‘Be my knife’, ‘Duel’, and ‘The Zig Zag kid’. A few of his books have been adapted into films, enabling him to reach even greater levels of success and recognition. As a personal recommendation, start with ‘Someone to run with’ and be ready for your imagination to take you straight to the narrow streets of Jerusalem.
Ruth, just like some other authors mentioned in this article, was also a teacher at University. She taught philosophy and film at Tel Aviv University! She is well known for the children and youth books she has written over the past decades and for the Israeli awards she has received: The Bialik Award, and the Yad Vashem Prize, among others. Two of the books she wrote for young children are ‘Rakefet, My First Love’, ‘Just One More Hug’, ‘and My Journey with Alex’.
Bonus track: Yehuda Amichai
We already talked about Yehuda Amichai when discussing great ways to learn Hebrew faster than your neighbors, but we’d like to take this opportunity to dedicate a few lines just to him. Amichai was an extraordinary poet, considered by thousands around the world to be the greatest poet of modern times.
He has won several prizes and awards, just a few of them are the Israel Prize, Bialik Prize, Brenner Prize, National Jewish Book Award for Translation of English Poetry.
Among his great poems are ‘God full of mercy’, ‘Endless poem’, and ‘I know a man’. In case you want to practice and read his poems in English, just click this link and you’ll be able to enjoy some of Amichai’s poetry.
Learn Hebrew today. Read books from Israeli writers
There are many ways to learn Hebrew, one way could be joining one of our live and online courses to learn modern Hebrew. Another way, that you could also do in parallel, is to start reading books in Hebrew. Don’t worry, there’s no need to start with Amichai’s poetry or with Amos Oz’s criticism, you can also begin with a book for children, and then, Ruth Almog could be a good starting point.
If you are ready to start, just check out our Hebrew courses here and let yourself be surprised by the amazing results you’ll have when joining our classes. Behatzlacha!