Monday, October 22, 2007

Michael Chabon...

is a total literary stud. His writing is sublime and very cool. I just finished Yiddish Policemen's Union and I was in awe. His book is so full of yiddish idioms, and using Yiddish words in an unusual manner to replace words in the everyday lexicon. For example, he used the word 'shoyfer' to mean 'cell phone'. A shofar, as most Jews will know is an announcing tool made from a rams horn to 'call' people. However, I can't imagine most people who aren't Jewish knowing this, or being able to extrapolate this knowledge to mean slang for 'cell phone'. Chabon's novel is peppered throughout with this type of 'yiddish-ism'. I love it, it feels like being in on a really cool private joke. However, the Jewish population being what it is, probably less than 2% of the world population, I can't imagine that many people are going to be 'in' on the joke. That said, this was a great novel, and I was thrilled to have read it.

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