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Condition: Used: Good
Comment: LOOKS ALMOST LIKE NEW,BUT HAS ALOT OF WRITING IN IT,INSIDE COVER HAS PRIOR OWNER INFO,AND SEVERAL PAGES,BOOK IS CLEAN,AND YOU CAN READ EVERY PAGE,JUST HAS NOTES AROUND THE PRINT,MOSTLY IN PENCIL.
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In My Father's Court Paperback – October 1, 1991

10 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

In My Father's Court + The Collected Stories of Isaac Bashevis Singer + Tevye the Dairyman and The Railroad Stories (Library of Yiddish Classics)
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Editorial Reviews

Review

The sort of book . . . only a writer at the height of his powers, firmly in command of his created world, his mind charged with vivid memories, can somehow shake effortlessly out of his sleeve . . . [The writing is] often close to the Biblical directness of feeling that Tolstoy prescribed for the 'universal art of the future.' (Raymond Rosenthal, The New Leader)

A world that no longer exists reaches us thorugh one of the greatest literary artists of our time. (Albert H. Friedlander, Saturday Review)

About the Author

Isaac Bashevis Singer (1904-91) was the author of many novels, stories, children's books, and memoirs. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1978.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Reprint edition (October 1, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374505926
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374505929
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #561,310 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Randy Keehn VINE VOICE on May 8, 2002
Format: Paperback
I am a big fan of I. B. Singer's. To me, he is the greatest short story writer of the 20th Century. His stories often tell the tale of the Jewish communities in Poland in the 100 years prior to WWII. As a result of Hitler's demonic policies, it is a society, a culture, that no longer exists. Singer's short stories are a master study of individuals; their eccentricities and struggles in that society. He has written of the present and he has written some excellent novels and novellas but his best work is in the Jewish communities in Poland. In this autobiographical work, Singer gives us some more insights into that world through the eyes of a young boy observing his Rabbi father. We start out with a number of recollections of individuals and their problems that were brought before his father. These would easily fit within the short story motif that Singer excels in. As the book get a bit past the midway point, the autobiographical nature comes to the fore-front and we eventually follow Isaac B in his early development into a young man. This is interesting and very helpful to the student of Singer. Its' shortcoming results from Singer's practice of keeping his own character, whenever present, in the background or as the story-teller. When, in the final chapters, he is the main character, the quality of writing seems to drop a notch and suddenly, the book comes to an end. First time readers of Singer might do better to start with one of his collections of short stories or, ironicaly, the sequel to this book, "More from My Father's Court". Singer is always great but he is usually greater that he was in this book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mustakulta on July 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
The book is set in early 20th century Poland. It's about how the writer spent his childhood in his fathers rabbinate. Great book, very highly recomended, much better than other (still pretty good) works by Singer I've read.

Forewords of I.B.Singer's "In My Father's Court" (slightly tacky translation from Finnish):

"This book is about a family and a rabbinate which were so close to each other that it was difficult to tell where one ended and other started. Rabbinate, beth din, is an ancient institution among the jeweish people. [...] Beth din is at the same time kind of court of law, synagogue and place for study. [...] Even though beth din is about to disappear I'm certain that it will revive and will develope into an universal institution. The basic principle is that [...] the best justice is the kind which both sides can accept. Beth din is opposite to all institutions that use force, wether they are left wing or right wing."

Beth din seems to be completely decentraliced justice system, based on competing rabbinates and their interpretions on Tora. Rabbinate can be established by anybody as long as he gets acceptance from the local people (=gets customers). Rabbies get paid for their juridical and seremonial services, they don't live out of charity or taxes. The judges who are known and respected for their knowledge and reasonable intepretions of Tora get more customers and become more succesful. Participation on beth din trial and acceptance of it's sanctions are completely voluntary but refusing justice can lead to excommuniation.

Some links:

I.B.Singer:
[...]

In My Father's Court/www.amazon.
Read more ›
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Thomas on January 20, 2003
Format: Paperback
Observing through the eyes of a young child we are led through life in the jewish community of Warshaw. Many different figures appear in the house of the boy's father, the rabbi, to ask for his advice and judgement, decisions in religious or worldly matters. Behind all that we feel the deep love of the author, not only for the chracters depicted in the many stories, but for all human beings. It is one of the books that, despite telling stories of times past, makes us aware of ourselves and our own existence, our desires and weaknesses alike.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Louis Postel on January 18, 2010
Format: Paperback
So of course I told him to jump in the lake. Why read something like this written in a dead language about a world swept away by war and slaughter. Ugh. Of course, shortly after the old man died, I picked up Father's Court and breathed in every word as though it were oxygen and Singer was offering new life. So what are you going to do?
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Format: Paperback
When I first chose this book at the book store I had no idea how important it would be for me. I just wanted to complete my "record" of Bashevis - Singer books that I had started as mandatory reading in high school and kept reading as I got hooked.

Unfortunately, on my recent trip to Israel I had to say goodbye to my grandmother who passed away. My grandmother was of Polish-Jewish decent, and although she came from an affluent Polish family, she also came from a chassidic family and reading this book was like reading my grandmother's memoir.

Up until World War 2 she never suffered hunger but it seemed like she grew among the same people Bashevis-Singer is skillfully depicting in his short stories of half reality and half fiction.

She and her family wore the same clothing, they ate the same types of food, struggled with the same questions about faith and the face of the Jewish community in the diaspora.

After my grandma's passing I didn't read the book, I swallowed its words with unbelievable thirst.

I started understanding many aspects of my grandma that were enigmatic to me before.

I enjoyed this book tremendously and was extremely sad when I took in the last word.
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