„In seinem treuen Herzen die Essenz beider Welten“. Shmuel Yosef Agnon’s relationship with Berlin

  Prof. Dr. Dan Laor, Department of Literature The Jacob and Shoshana Schreiber Chair for Contemporary Jewish Culture, Tel Aviv University

The major focus of interest is the writer Shmuel Yosef Agnon (1887-1970), Israeli Nobel Prize Laureate for the year 1966. Born in Buczacz, Eastern Galicia, Agnon immigrated to Palestine in 1908, and then moved to Germany, where he lived for tvelve years (1912-1924).

He first resided in Berlin (until 1920) and later in the Frankfurt area, though he was still a frequenter in Berlin. Agnon maintained his contacts with Berlin long after his return to Palestine (1924), and was actually present at the German Jewish literary scene until the break of World War II.

Agnon is a remarkable representative of Jewish life in Berlin, and of the East European cultural legacy in that city. He played an important role in the "Juedische Renaissance" movement initiated by Martin Buber and had a significant impact in turning Berlin (and Germany at large) into a major center of Hebrew creativity.


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