For Assaf Inbari, born on Kibbutz Afikim, the kibbutz is the most interesting social creation of the 20th century. In a penetrating book, he returns to the seven tragic and legendary figures who accompanied the dream and its shattering, and describes the lofty ideal from its birth in the Soviet Union in the 1920s, through its realization in the Jordan Valley to its present form, plagued by privatization and individualism.
In addition to the physical and security hardships of the early days, there is also the emotional difficulty as the kibbutz members try to rid themselves of personal desires: the longing for a family, for privacy and something to call their own - all in order to create a better society.
What happens to a group of young people in their 20s who leave behind everything they are familiar with, on the way to creating a "new man" and a "new society"? Using letters, notes, minutes of meetings and memoirs, Inbari has created a novel that tells the story with a critical but loving eye. His perspective, at a remove, surveys kibbutz life via the absolute equality practiced -- from the distribution of work and clothing, and the raising of children in the children`s house, to the collectivism that dictates the muting of emotions that do not suit the kibbutz and its purpose.
ENGLISH TRANSLATION AVAILABLE (for publishers only).
Inbari has invented a new genre: the biography of place. Inbari`s achievement is so great and so impressive, that after finishing it I feel it would be better to say nothing for a while.
A wonderful writer... Home
is the best book ever written about the kibbutz.
A terse chronicle of tens of years. The facts alone have an impact, and will certainly move readers.
stands in splendid isolation at the lofty heights of Hebrew literature. Splendid.