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English translation available (for publishers only)


Lea Goldberg wrote this panoramic novel in the latter part of the 1930s. A few chapters appeared in magazines and newspapers, but she eventually decided not to publish the whole novel, which was found among her belongings after her death.

Elhanan Karon, a Hebrew poet from Palestine, comes to Berlin in 1932-33 to complete his research on the affinity between Jewish and Arab mysticism. But an unexpected encounter with Antonia, a young Christian German student and the loss of his finest manuscript change his plans. Both the growing relationship between the two young people and Elhanan`s search for the manuscript are inevitably influenced by the historical events of that period. His conversations with his friends – Russian immigrants, Eastern- European Jews, German scientists, and more – reveal the various cultural choices that stand before him: to preserve his Jewish identity, adopt socialism, or opt for assimilation. Ultimately, however, history chooses for him. The growing power of the Nazis slowly becomes a dominant element in the book, and the ongoing tension between the original motherland and the adopted one, familiar to readers of Goldberg`s poetry, takes center stage.

Title Losses
Writer's Last Name Goldberg
Writer's First Name Lea
Genre Fiction
Publisher (Hebrew) Sifriat Poalim
No. Pages 380pp.
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Avedot ("Mukdash Le-Antonia")
  • “ There is beauty in Losses. The novel is like amber that has trapped the air and atmosphere of another era.”

  • “ Never before has Goldberg touched so explicitly on politics, Jewish identity, religion and sexuality. ”

    Yedioth Ahronoth
  • “ Losses shows how much the creation and loss of ideological identity preoccupied Goldberg... Exquisite depictions of Berlin in the 1930s.”