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The Ravens

Avirama Golan
Two women dominate Avirama Golan`s astute novel, representing two different worlds - Zhenia, who was born in 1919 in a small, muddy town near the Polish-Ukrainian border, and Didi who was born on an idealistic kibbutz in Israel in the mid-1950s. In 1939, just before the German invasion, Zhenia met an envoy from Eretz Israel, emigrated with him to his country and was saved from annihilation. Didi, who grew up in the children`s house of the kibbutz without any love, rebelled against her parents and the ideals on which she was raised, left the kibbutz and married a young man of Sephardic origin. The paranoid Zhenia has raised two children; she is a suffocating, castrating mother as well as a frigid housewife obsessed with cleanliness. Didi is now an assistant television producer, a yuppie career woman with an adolescent daughter. At the age of forty-four, she is having an affair with a much younger man. What is the relationship between these two women who meet by chance? Finding any resemblance between them is left to the reader. We simply follow the life-stories linked by a web of similarities that reflect the dynamics of Israeli society. Zhenia, for example, whose son is killed in a daring military operation, is offset by a Palestinian mother whose son was killed during a demonstration. When Didi meets Zhenia in the course of her research for a television program, she is repelled by the paranoid elderly woman who blames the entire world for her son`s death – perhaps because Zhenia reminds her of herself. For like Zhenia, Didi is a stifling mother who tries through her love to rectify the stern education of the kibbutz. Strangely, she cannot fathom her daughter Na`ama`s interest in the ravens that nest in the big tree by their house. These birds can be dangerous in their excessive care for their young.

Golan’s voice is intense and striking, and presents a fresco of modern Israeli society, full of contradictions but also with an inexhaustible will to live… Golan has a great talent for reading people's souls and knowing how how to touch your heart.. An extraordinary novel. 
Informazione Corretta (Italy)

A moving story of unfulfilled or worn-out love, of tragic misunderstandings and of the longing for safety and closeness…Avirama Golan has extraordinarily sensitive linguistic power, and knows to enhance the tension of the story. 
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Golan has written a novel that presents a major ethical issue in exciting language.

English translation available (for publishers only)

Golan: The Ravens
Title The Ravens
Author’s Last Name Golan
Author's First Name Avirama
Language(s) German, Italian
Genre novel
Publisher (Hebrew) Hakibbutz Hameuchad/ Siman Kriah
Year of Publication (Hebrew) 2004
No. Pages 183 pp.
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Ha-Orvim
Representation Represented by ITHL


German: Frankfurt, Suhrkamp, 2007
Italian: Florence, Giuntina, 2007

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The fourth German-Hebrew/Hebrew-German translation workshop April 29 to May 5, 2018 Beit Ben-Yehuda, Jerusalem
After workshops in Berlin, Jerusalem and Straelen, the workshop will return to Jerusalem this spring. This workshop will focus on the participants translations. These are unfinished translations that have not yet been published. These will be sent to all participants. The workshop is open to 10 participants and is intended for literary translators with experience and publications. Workshop facilitators: Anne Birkenhauer and Gadi Goldberg Prerequisites: At least one published translation Duration: Sunday, April 29, 2018 until Saturday, May 5, 2018 Location: Beit Ben-Yehuda, 28 Ein Gedi St., 93383 Jerusalem Participation fee: Participation (Accommodation and meals) is free of charge. Travel / flight expenses will be refunded. For more details and for the documents required for submitting application: Anne Birkenhauer, and Gadi Goldberg,
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