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God is One Hundred Percent Disabled

Motti Awerbuch
The search for identity is the core of this novel in which Awerbuch both presents a stirring and colorful human story and uses it successfully to examine philosophical, psychological and social issues. Sammy, the narrator, is a professional photographer torn between the need to maintain contact with his son and his ex-wife, and his emotional dependence on the charismatic and self-destructive Eliot, his partner for the past 30 years. From Eliot he has learned that true meaning lies on the margins of the picture. The defective, the deviant and the distorted show the center of the picture in its true light. According to such a view, this is not merely a novel about two aging homosexuals whose relationship is crumbling, but about the human need for contact, about conflicting identities and about the possibility of renewal. Sammy`s world shakes when Haymon, a young man of oriental origin, invades his life as Eliot`s partner. Haymon comes from society`s margins, and is handsome and vigorous as an ancient god. His entry into their lives arouses Sammy emotionally, helping him separate himself from the sense of permanency he created in relation to his partner, and accentuates their differences. At the same time Sammy learns that his son is about to marry and become a father. Sammy is the son of idealists who settled in a kibbutz. Eliot is the child of a Birkenau survivor who immigrated to Eretz Israel after the war, became an obsessive gambler and left for Germany where he established a brothel in Munich. While Eliot himself was born in Israel and became an army officer, he decided to rebel against social conventions and give free rein to his sexuality. His self-destructive bent leads him to madness and abasement. Sami goes out into the Tel Aviv night looking for his lover and becomes acquainted with the grotesque nightmarish life as it is lived on society`s margins - that of prostitutes, addicts and the deranged. He loses Eliot and reaches a perilous conflict of his identities as father, son, partner, lover and artist. He emerges victorious and at peace, independent and reconciled to his loneliness. He manages to integrate his identities: that new whole is defective but nonetheless brings consolation.

Awerbuch God is One Hundred Percent Disabled
Title God is One Hundred Percent Disabled
Author’s Last Name Awerbuch
Author's First Name Motti
Genre novel
Publisher (Hebrew) Am Oved
Year of Publication (Hebrew) 2003
No. Pages 306 pp.
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Elohim Nache Meʹa Achuz
Representation Represented by ITHL


Congratulations to Zeruya Shalev and Shifra Horn for receiving the 2017 Adei Wizo Prize.

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