A family's story of courage and survival on both sides of the Berlin Wall
Author: Nina Willner
Pubpsher: Hachette UK
Category: Biography & Autobiography
In Forty Autumns, Nina Willner recounts the history of three generations of her family - mothers, sisters, daughters and cousins - separated by forty years of Soviet rule, and reunited after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Shortly after the end of the Second World War, as the Soviets took control of the eastern part of Germany, Hanna, a schoolteacher's daughter, escaped with nothing more than a small suitcase and the clothes on her back. As Hanna built a new life in the West, her relatives (her mother, father and eight siblings) remained in the East. The construction of the Berlin Wall severed all hope of any future reunion. Hanna fell in love and moved to America. She made many attempts to establish contact with her family, but most were unsuccessful. Her father was under close observation; her mother, younger sister Heidi and the others struggled to adjust to life under a bizarre and brutal regime that kept its citizens cut off from the outside world. A few years later, Hanna had a daughter - Nina - who grew up to become the first female US Army intelligence officer to lead sensitive intelligence collection operations in East Berlin at the height of the Cold War. At the same time, Heidi's daughter, Cordula, was training to become a member of the East German Olympic cycling team. Though separated by only a few miles, Nina and her relatives led entirely different lives. Once the Berlin Wall came down, and the families were reunited, Nina Willner discovered an extraordinary story. In Forty Autumns she vividly brings to life many accounts of courage and survival, set against the backdrop of four decades that divided a nation and the world.
The Evolution of the Abraham-Ishmael Legends in Islamic Exegesis
Author: Reuven Firestone
Pubpsher: SUNY Press
Scholars have long pointed to the great affinity between stories found in the Bible and the Qur'an, yet no explanation has been proposed that satisfactorily explains the odd combination of incredible likeness and unique divergence. Firestone provides a refreshing, new approach to scriptural issues of textuality, exegesis, and the origins and use of legend. This book clearly presents the full range of Islamic legends from the Qur'an and early Islamic exegesis about Abraham's journeys and adventures in the Land of Canaan and Arabia, many of them available for the first time in English translation. The author examines this broad sample of Islamic legends in relation to those found in Jewish, Christian, and pre-Islamic Arabian communities, and postulates an evolutionary journey of the literature. He presents a thorough textual analysis of the material and proposes a model for understanding early Islamic narrative based in literary theory, approaches to comparative religion, and the history of the pre-Islamic and early Islamic Middle East.
Release on 2007 | by Mishael M. Caspi,Mishael Caspi,John T. Greene
Author: Mishael M. Caspi,Mishael Caspi,John T. Greene
Pubpsher: University Press of America
Unbinding the Binding of Isaac is an anthology of three faiths' interpretations of the Genesis 22:1-19 story. The various exegeses of this story have been mined by the Jewish, Islamic, and Christian faiths for a protracted period of time. The "Aqedah," as the binding story is known universally, stimulates the interests and imaginations of theologians, linguists, poets, historians, and artists of various skills and stripes. The Aqedah continues to stimulate inquiry and application to modern situations. Unbinding the Binding of Isaac is at once ancient and modern in its scope, purpose, and relevance to scholarly inquiry regarding this ongoing debate.
The best-kept secret in modern British literature. Andrew MarrA haunting story of violence and love.Calum and Neil are the cone-gatherers two brothers at work in the forest of a large Scottish estate. But the harmony of their life together is shadowed by the obsessive hatred of Duror, the gamekeeper.Set during the Second World War, Robin Jenkins greatest novel is an immensely powerful examination of good and evil, and mankinds propensity for both. Removed from the destruction and bloodshed of the war, the brothers oblivious happiness becomes increasingly fragile as darker forces close in around them.Suspenseful, dark and unforgettable, The Cone-Gatherers is a towering work of fiction, a masterpiece of modern Scottish literature.Let me alert everyone to the best-kept secret in modern British literature. If you love the novel; if you are interested in books that are humane and wise, not slick and cynical; then treat yourself this year to some Robin Jenkins. Andrew MarrA masterpiece of concision and terrible pathos. Isobel MurrayLike all the great masters, his skill is lightly worn, his sentences singing with what he does not say. The TimesFew novels in our heritage have the bell-like harmonies of this book . . . it has a strange, haunting poetic quality, conjuring from a few props a fable of eternal significance. Iain Crichton Smith