MembersIsraeli Literature

The era of modern Israeli literature began with the so-called “Authors of the Tashach Generation” (Tashach = ח”תש = Hebrew for the year 1948), who spearheaded Hebrew literature during the first decade after the founding of the state.

By Maya Shahal |
Amos Oz
Photo: Photo: Tomer Neuberg / Flash90

Moshe Shamir, S. Yizhar, Yigal Mossinson, Nathan Shaham, Hanoch Bartov and Haim Hefer are just a few members of the generation who wrote about their experiences and impressions of the War of Independence and Israel’s rebirth. They were the first generation to have been born in Israel, to have grown up in a non-religious national environment, and to write in Hebrew. Their stories were true to reality with an autobiographical character and dealt with life in the era of the formation of the nascent state.

The 1960s launched authors of a new generation, known as the generation of the Land, among them Amos Oz, A. B. Yehoshua, Amalia Kahana-Carmon, Aharon Appelfeld, Yehoshua Kenaz, Yoram Kaniuk, Pinchas Sadeh, Shulamit Lapid, Sami Michael and others. As was the case with cinema, so, too, in literature the character of the sabra, an Israeli-born hero, the character of the anti-hero, and the focus on small details and the human condition were the most important elements in these books. Consider, for example, “My Michael” by Oz, “Himmo, King of Jerusalem” by Kaniuk and “One...

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