2004 is the centennial year of the master storyteller Isaac Bashevis
Singer, who in 1978 became the seventh American to be awarded the
Nobel Prize for Literature. In July, Singer joins the Library of
America series in a three-volume edition of his collected stories
and a fully illustrated companion Albuma first for the award-
winning nonprofit publisher dedicated to preserving America's best
and most significant writing in handsome, enduring volumes,
featuring authoritative texts. This major publishing event is the
centerpiece of the Isaac Bashevis Singer Centennial
celebration. The Centennial is a multifaceted program of public
readings, panels, exhibitions, and workshops exploring Singer and
the immigrant literary experience, supported by the National
Endowment for the Humanities and produced with cultural institutions
nationwide from February 2004 to January 2005.
"Singer is the emblematic example of an ethnic American writer who
found a wide, mainstream audience, transforming himself and American
literature in the process," says Max Rudin, Library of America
publisher and Centennial director. "The Library of America is
delighted, and honored, to gather for the first time the brilliant
stories that speak so powerfully to the fears and longings of our
modern nation of immigrants. We hope the books and the Centennial
celebrations will introduce new generations of readers to the work
of this self-described 'entertainer of the spirit.'"
Browse complete centennial calendar
A website detailing a year-long series of programs to commemorate 350 years of Jewish life in America.
Read current English or Yiddish editions of the paper that featured so much of Singer's fiction and journalism.
Explores the Yiddish writer's controversial reputation with essays on his
artistry, rare recordings, short appreciations by scholars and writers, and
photo galleries including a selection by photographer Bruce Davidson.
At left: Partisan Review, May-June 1953. Singer's American readership increased substantially when Saul Bellow's translation of "Gimpel the Fool" appeared in Partisan Review.