A WRITER'S WIT
My Book World
Each weekend I try to view selected portions of C-SPAN’s Book-TV, forty-eight straight hours of recorded author readings of nonfiction now hitting the shelves, and sometimes six- or eight-hour segments covering book festivals around the US. C-SPAN, by the way, is supported by most cable and satellite TV providers, so check your listings. You can also view at any time any reading at Book-TV’s Web site. And if you do wish to tune in, you can view, download, and print a copy of the weekend’s schedule off the Web site. Please find below a presentation that recently affected me very deeply.
On January 29, 2017, 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., the Museum of Jewish History in New York City presented an oral reading of Wiesel’s moving work, Night. Readers of all kinds—actors, directors and producers, rabbis and other Jewish leaders, authors, students, journalists, police and politicians, among many others, about a hundred—read straight through with only two ten-minute intermissions, until the late Wiesel’s horrific account of the Holocaust was told.
Each reading segment was no more than five minutes, and some segments were read in Yiddish. There were old readers, young, black, white, Jewish, Gentile, Asian, Latin—the total effect being that six million ghosts were telling their stories through Wiesel. In his work, night serves as an extended metaphor, that the entire ordeal is one long, hellish night, is every murdered Jew’s story, every detail, and this simple production/tribute may be one of the most powerful of its kind that I’ve ever witnessed. Everyone must view it, then read the book. You may view the five-hour presentation at one of the following Web sites:
Museum of Jewish Heritage: A Living Memorial to the Holocaust
#WeRemember | #nycReadsNight
NEXT TIME: New Yorker Fiction 2017