The Collected Stories contains forty-seven tales by Singer, selected by the author himself for publication in 1982. During his lifetime, in addition to more than a dozen novels translated into English, he produced several memoirs, children’s books, and nearly 150 short stories. The settings of Singer’s stories span the globe, from Tel Aviv to Miami Beach, and take place throughout the ages.
But the bulk of his stories take place in Eastern European villages in the late 1800s through the First World War, and in New York during the 1940s-70s. His themes include love, death, temptation, and getting old. His stories explore the spirit world (demons, angels, ghosts, transmigration of souls, etc.), love transcending death, and the decline of religion. He wrote ghost stories, children’s farces, and intellectual discourse in story form. Isaac Bashevis Singer Singer was born in 1904 in Radzymin, Poland, to a Hassidic rabbinic family. His father was a rabbi and teacher who moved his family to Warsaw when Isaac was four. Following after his older brother, Israel Joshua Singer, he became a journalist, an editor, and a translator of popular works into Yiddish. In 1935 he moved to New York, where he continued to write for the Yiddish press-particularly the Jewish Daily Forward-as well as writing original works of fiction.
Among his novels are Satan in Goray (1935), The Family Moskat (1950), The Magician of Lublin (1960), The Slave (1962), and Shosha (1978). In 1978 Singer received the Nobel Prize for Literature, being the only Yiddish writer to ever win that merit. He died in 1991 at the age of 87 in Surfside, Florida.
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