Dreaming the Actual

Contemporary Fiction and Poetry by Israeli Women Writers

Edited by Miriyam Glazer
Introduction by Miriyam Glazer

Subjects: Poetry, Jewish Studies, Hebrew Language And Literature, Women's Studies
Series: SUNY series in Modern Jewish Literature and Culture
Paperback : 9780791445587, 414 pages, May 2000
Hardcover : 9780791445570, 414 pages, May 2000

Alternative formats available from:

Table of contents



Part I. Short Stories


And She Is Joseph by Nurit Zarchi
Madame Bovary in Neve Tsedek by Nurit Zarchi
Invisible Meaning by Ruth Almog
A Piece of Cake for Saul by Mira Magen
If Nella Could Do It by Shulamith Gilboa
The Fruit of Paradise by Leah Aini
Rest by Leah Anin
"It's Greek to You," She Said to Him by Savyon Liebrecht
Hunger by Nava Semel
Schlaffstunde by Yehudit Katzir
Two Hours on the Road by Shulamith Hareven
Gerbera Daisies at Half-Price by Mira Magen
Apples in Honey by Yehudit Hendel
Photograph by Ronit Matalon


Introduction to Selected Short Stories by Orly Castel-Bloom


A Thousand Shekels a Story by Orly Castel-Bloom
The Woman Who Went Looking for a Walkie-Talkie by Orly Castel-Bloom
The Woman Whose Hand Got Stuck in the Mailbox by Orly Castel-Bloom


A special Section: Stories Translated from the Russian


Monologue of a Life Model by Dina Rubin
Rough Casting by Elena Makarova


Part II. Poetry

Yona Volach: In Memoriam


I Have a Stage in My Head
When You Come Sleep with Me
The Life You Have


Dahlia Ravikovitch


Real Love Isn't What It Seems
An Unusual Autumn
Hovering at a Low Altitude
Blood Heifer


Hedva Harechavi


1 x 2
And It Is Still That Way
Already Night, Already Day


Raquel Chalfi


Reading the I Ching
Night Hair


Maya Bejerano


I Made a New Memory for You
States of War
From "Hymns of Job"


Esther Ettinger


Excerpts from the Sabbath Dream Book
Micrographic Manuscript, Miniature (I)
Micrographic Manuscript, Miniature (II)
The Glass
Believe Me


Chava Pinchas-Cohen


Remebering Our Fathers
Her, Me, and Yochanan
My English Teacher
The Yearning of Karakashian
The Ineffable Name
Journey of a Doe


Hamutal Bar Yosef


Jaffa, July 1948
Reflections on a Dove
In the Library
An Angel on the Beach


Agi Mishol


The Sacred Cow of Hardship
Gravity, Death


Devorah Amir


After Fall, 1956
I Have Longings for My Dead
What Seeps In
Thoughts about Sari's Jump
The "Nightingale" of Uncle Yair


Leah Aini


One Girl's Dance
In Their House
The Empress of Imagined Fertility


Nidaa Khoury


Death Is Your Salvation
People of Fire
People of Pomegranates
People of Figs
People of Olives


A Special Section: American Israeli Poets Writing in English

Shirley Kaufman


Deja Vu
Job's Wife
The Mount of Olives


Linda Zisquit


From "Unopened Letters"
After Years of Feasting and No Sacrifice
A Word before the Last about Loss


Rachel Tzvia Back


Notes: From the Wait
Abu Salim, Healer
Gaza, Undated
After Eden


Karen Alkalay-Gut

From "Between Bombardments: A Journal"
Kitzbuhl Church
Public Outcry


This anthology of contemporary fiction and poetry by Israeli women writers includes works originally written in Hebrew, Arabic, Russian, and English.


This book introduces the powerful and provocative new fiction and poetry of Israel's women writers to an English-speaking audience. Read together, the stories and poems in this book will help to create a more sophisticated understanding of Middle Eastern passions and realities, and will foster a wealth of discussion about the meanings of homeland, exile, and diaspora; women's sexuality and spirituality; gender roles; the legacy of the Holocaust; the tensions and reconciliations of religion and secular life; the effects of war; and the power of memory.

In her introduction, Miriyam Glazer vividly reconstructs the diversities, tensions, and complexity of current Israeli literature, and the book reflects the multiculturality of modern-day Israel by including stories and poems originally written in Arabic, Russian, Hebrew, and English. Brief biographical and critical introductions are provided for each writer, and the book features specially commissioned and new translations of twenty stories and seventy-five poems, many available here for the first time in English.

Miriyam Glazer is Professor of Literature and Director of the Dortort Writers Institute at the University of Judaism in Los Angeles. She is the author of Burning Air and a Clear Mind: Contemporary Israeli Women Poets.


"This book significantly expands the canon of contemporary literature available to English-speaking readers through excellent translations of important writers. Glazer coherently organizes and introduces the work of, arguably, every significant Israeli woman poet and prose writer today through adept and readable translations. " — Andrew Vogel Ettin, Wake Forest University

"This is a book of genuine distinction. The selection of writers and poets can scarcely be improved upon, and the translations are all of high quality. There is at present nothing in print in English comparable to this book in scope and variety. " — Stanley F. Chyet, Hebrew Union College