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Portraits: David Grossman
Martin Amis Margaret Atwood Mary Gordon Colin McGinn David Grossman Anne Provoost
Martin Amis Margaret Atwood Mary Gordon Colin McGinn David Grossman Anne Provoost
Richard Rodriguez Salman Rushdie Will Power Pema Chödrön Sir John Houghton Jeanette Winterson
Richard Rodriguez Salman Rushdie Will Power Pema Chödrön Sir John Houghton Jeanette Winterson

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Read an excerpt of David Grossman's retelling of the Samson story. Plus, watch the full interview.

"I think this is our duty, and our pleasure to go and to decode [the Bible] and to find the nuances and the silences between these words. And to write our stories into the story of the Bible."
--David Grossman

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David Grossman is an Israeli novelist, essayist, playwright, and children's book author who has written extensively on Israeli-Palestinian relations and whose fictional works mine the depths of youth, adolescence, and adulthood in modern Israeli society.

Grossman's novels include THE SMILE OF THE LAMB (1983), SEE UNDER: LOVE (1986), THE BOOK OF INTIMATE GRAMMAR (1991), THE ZIG-ZAG KID (1994), BE MY KNIFE (1998), SOMEONE TO RUN WITH (2000), and HER BODY KNOWS (2004).

Grossman is well known for his nonfiction and has authored several groundbreaking journalistic works on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. These include 1987's THE YELLOW WIND (called by the Los Angeles Times "the most honest, soul-searching book yet written by an Israeli" on the conflict), SLEEPING ON A WIRE: CONVERSATIONS WITH PALESTINIANS IN ISRAEL (1992), and DEATH AS A WAY OF LIFE: FROM OSLO TO THE GENEVA AGREEMENT (2003).

Grossman's work has been translated into 25 languages and he has received numerous international awards for his writing, including the Premio Grinzane, the Premio Mondelo, the Valumbrosa Prize, and the Vittorio de Sica Prize (Italy); the Marsh Award for Children's Literature in Translation (Britain); the Buxtehuder Bulle (Germany); and the Prix Eliette Von Karajan (Austria). He holds the rank of Chevalier de l'Ordre des Artes et des Lettres in France.

Grossman continues to write frequently on Israeli culture and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for the European and American press. His most recent novel, LOVERS AND STRANGERS, was published in August 2005.

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Watch and Listen
  • Watch the full interview or read the transcript

    listenDavid Grossman reads and the PEN Festival (9:03 mp3)

    listenBill Moyers talks with David Grossman, March 15, 2002 (15:55)

    listenMore from the PEN World Voices Festival Archive

    listenHouston Smith on Judaism from THE WISDOM OF FAITH (mp3)


  • Find out more
  • About Samson's Foxes and Nazarites to God — matters under discussion in the interview

  • About faith & politics

  • About myths & sacred tales

  • FAITH & REASON booklist


  • Resources
  • "To see ourselves ... ," David Grossman on Israeli writers in THE GUARDIAN

  • Reflections on the Body Politic: A Conversation With David Grossman, THE NATION


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