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    CELEBRATE THE YEAR’S BEST IN JEWISH WRITING AT THE
    11TH ANNUAL HYMAN S. & FREDA BERNSTEIN JEWISH LITERARY FESTIVAL
    Festival Runs from October 18-28, 2009 in the Nation’s Capital

    Washington, D.C. (August 14, 2009) – This fall, celebrate the best in Jewish writing at the 11th Annual Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival. Presented by the Washington D.C. Jewish Community Center’s Morris Cafritz Center for the Arts, this year’s Festival features a selection of authors who have received national recognition for their works, including rave reviews from publications such as The Washington Post, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. The Festival runs October 18-28.

    The books selected for this year’s Festival appeal to book lovers with diverse interests including history, humor, poetry, fiction and much more. This year’s featured authors are:

     Neal Bascomb, author of Hunting Eichmann
     Deborah Bodin Cohen, author of Nachshon, Who Was Afraid to Swim
     Morris Dickstein, author of Dancing in the Dark
     Melissa Ford, author of Navigating the Land of IF
     Robin Gerber, author of Barbie and Ruth
     Zoë Heller, author of The Believers
     Dara Horn, author of All Other Nights
     Jonathan Keats, author of Book of the Unknown
     Binnie Kirshenbaum, author of The Scenic Route
     Nora Labiner, author of German for Travelers
     Joy Ladin, author of Transmigration Poems
     Shana Liebman, author of Sex, Drugs & Gefilte Fish
     Melvin Urofsky, author of Louis D. Brandeis: A Life

    “For more than a decade, the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival has hosted authors who have made an impact on the literary world, authors beloved by readers of all backgrounds,” says Lili Kalish Gersch, the Festival’s director. “This year’s authors are no exception, and we‘re honored to have them join us as we celebrate our 11th year.”

    During the 10-day event, attendees will have the opportunity to enjoy thoughtful talks and readings by featured authors, participate in engaging discussions with them, and enjoy stimulating conversations with other avid readers.

    The Festival opens on Sunday, October 18, with a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the publication of famed American novelist Philip Roth’s first book, Goodbye, Columbus with an extraordinary evening of literature and theater. Attendees will enjoy dramatic readings from Goodbye, Columbus, Patrimony, Portnoy’s Complaint, Everyman and others. Adapted and directed by Derek Goldman, Artistic Director of the Davis Performing Arts Center at Georgetown University, the show will begin at 8:00 pm, and will be followed by a reception.

    In addition to the author events, attendees can view a screening of Adam Resurrected on Monday, October 19, at the Aaron & Cecile Goldman Theater. Based on the novel by Israeli author Yoram Kaniuk, the film stars Jeff Goldblum and William Dafoe, and tells the story of Adam Stein, a charismatic patient at a mental institution for Holocaust survivors in 1961. Following the film, American University professor Pamela Nadell will lead a discussion with the audience. The show will begin at 7:30 p.m.

    On Saturday, October 24, the Festival will present SLAM: An Evening of Spoken Word Poetry with featured performer and artist Jake Marmer. Local poets and spoken word performers will also have the opportunity to take the stage. This event will be at Hillyer Art Space, located 9 Hillyer Court NW. The show begins at 9:00 p.m.

    This year’s children’s book event, Sefer Safari, will explore the world of books and the art of storytelling with a morning of crafts and family activities. Kids can get a hands-on lesson on how books are made during a bookbinding workshop, enjoy a reading of Nachshon, Who Was Afraid to Swim by Deborah Bodin Cohen, 2009 Sugarman Award winner, and learn how to tell their own stories using words, music and body movement during the storytelling session. The Sefer Safari will take place on Sunday, October 25, at 10:30 a.m. in the center’s preschool lobby.

    The Festival closes on Wednesday, October 28, with the Gerald L. Bernstein Memorial Lecture. This year’s speaker is Professor Howard M. Sachar, American historian and author of the landmark book, A History of the Jews in America. Sachar will speak on current Israeli myths and realities, and the historic and agonizing dilemma of reconciling small state security with Great Power diplomacy. The lecture will take place in the Aaron & Cecile Goldman Theater at 8:00 p.m., and will be followed by a reception.

    Tickets are available beginning September 15. To purchase Festival passes or tickets for individual events and locations, please visit http://www.washingtondcjcc.org/litfest or call (202) 777-3251. A full schedule of events is also available on the Web site. The Washington DCJCC is located at 1529 16th Street NW in Washington D.C.

    ###

    About the Festival
    The Hyman S & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival, hosted in Washington D.C., presents the year’s best in Jewish works by both emerging and established writers from across the globe. An annual celebration of Jewish literature, the Festival features engaging author panels, readings and talks for avid lovers of fiction, poetry, history, humor, children’s stories and much more. For more information, visit washingtondcjcc.org/litfest.

    The Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival is an annual event of Washington DCJCC’s Morris Cafritz Center for the Arts. The Washington DCJCC works to preserve and strengthen Jewish identity, heritage, tradition and values through a wide variety of social, cultural, recreational and educational programs and services. The 16th Street J is committed to welcoming everyone in the community; membership and all activities are open to all. The Washington DCJCC is a beneficiary agency of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington and a designated agency of the United Way.

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