From Emma Lazarus to Allen Ginsberg, Jewish American poets have long been a presence in American poetry. Once a group of isolated voices, their number and range has grown in the last 50 years to reveal a distinct American poetic tradition. The first complete guide to the diversity and vitality of this tradition, Jewish American Poetry features poems by 26 leading poets (some written especially for this volume) followed by the poets' own reflections on the Jewish and American aspects of their work.
The second half of the book gathers ten wide-ranging essays on the history and scope of Jewish American poetry, offering an unprecedented introduction to its Yiddish and Sephardic heritage, its distinctive poetics of commentary, its Kabbalists, its feminists, and more. With a general introduction that places this literature in the contexts of both Jewish culture and American poetry, Jewish American Poetry opens the door to a much-needed discussion of the significance of the Jewish voice in American literature.