Salvage poetics in see under: Love Momik, Mottel and a Yiddish post-vernacular in Israeli literature

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1 Scopus citations


David Grossman’s Hebrew novel, See Under: Love (1986) serves as a model for how Yiddish functions as a post-vernacular language in modern Hebrew literature. While many readers have noticed the skill with which Grossman mimetically represents the Yiddish-inflected Hebrew of some characters in See Under: Love, Grossman mostly sidesteps Yiddish as an actual language within his novel. The focus here is on how Grossman approximates Yiddish through two primary models of salvage poetics, a term I have coined to refer to the ways in which iconic literary styles and or specific literary texts are mobilized by contemporary post-Holocaust communities in order to approximate a world in the aftermath of its destruction. Salvage poetics become evident in Grossman’s deployment of Sholem Aleichem’s Motel Paysie dem ḥazen’s as well as in his representation of Anshel Wasserman’s “Children of the Heart” stories where a pre-vernacular, literary, European-based Hebrew is employed in order to invoke an East European Yiddish-speaking milieu.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)48-57
Number of pages10
JournalProoftexts - Journal of Jewish Literature History
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Religious studies
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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