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THE PRICE WE PAY

David Grossman

Essays, Cossee, 2023 

For years, David Grossman has been commenting on the situation in Israel and Palestine in international magazines (The Guardian, De Standaard, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, The New York Times and many others). But after the terrorist attack of October 7 and the events that followed, what can one do other than express one’s horror and despair? David Grossman would not be himself if, after the initial shock, he did not ask the necessary painful questions: How could this massacre have taken place on Israeli soil? Why has the Netanyahu government, preoccupied with its scandals, completely lost sight of Gaza and the Palestinians there? And “who will we Israelis be when we rise from the ashes of this tragedy?”

 

In ten essays, Grossman sketches the (pre)history of October 7 as a series of disastrous decisions by a nationalist government focused solely on maintaining power, for whom language, culture and freedom of thought are no longer indisputable values. Ultimately, Grossman asks the most important question of all: Is it even possible to imagine a side-by-side existence under these deplorable conditions?

​​Rights Sold:

Germany: Hanser; France: Seuil; Italy: Mondadori; Netherlands: Cossee; Spain: PRH

Reviews:

"Prophetic… Nothing conveys today's tragedy better than Grossman's rare voice. If only similarly courageous thinkers on the other side would speak up too." —Neue Zuericher Zeitung

 

"David Grossman, Israel's most important living author, concisely describes those responsible for Israel's social division. Some of the writing predates October 7, and it makes clear how torn Israeli democracy is, and who are the ones responsible for that." —Die Welt am Sonntag

 

"Grossman's clarity and analytical acuity are captivating. He captures the ossified standoff between Israelis and Palestinians.  He pierces the hatred and hopelessness, the membrane becomes porous again, and possibilities appear. Grossman has unwavering trust in people and the possibility of life, in the face of all the suffering." —Bavarian Radio 24

 

"The latest collection of David Grossman's essays confirms why his political commentaries are of such great value. Grossman has always recognized the depth and complexity of Israel's conflict with the Palestinians, but he also has always shown empathy for the Palestinians and adhered to the ideal of peace.  It is regrettable that the committee in Stockholm has not yet decided to award the Nobel Prize for Literature to a contemporary Israeli author like David Grossman, in support of a just cause." —Salzburger Nachrichten

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