Remembering Elie Wiesel, Novelist

J.L. Wall

J.L. Wall is a native Kentuckian in self-imposed exile to the Midwest, where he teaches writing to college students and over-analyzes Leonard Cohen lyrics.

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4 Responses

  1. Jaybird says:

    At Auschwitz, there was a thing that happened to Wiesel that completely changed him and he wanted to retell the story somehow but he was never really able to put it together in a way that worked for him.

    It eventually became “The Trial Of God” and Robert Brown opens the book by saying how Wiesel said that this story didn’t work as a novel, as a play, or as a cantata. Trial of God has a play within a play which is, I guess, as close as he could get to what he had seen when, at Auschwitz, he witnessed three rabbis hold God on trial.

    “…inside the kingdom of night, I witnessed a strange trial. Three rabbis—all erudite and pious men—decided one winter evening to indict God for allowing his children to be massacred. I remember: I was there, and I felt like crying. But nobody cried.”Report

    • Jaybird in reply to Jaybird says:

      He needed to tell the story, he couldn’t tell the story, but he could tell the story about the telling of the story, I guess.Report

      • Aaron David in reply to Jaybird says:

        I read a crime novel once that specifically called to the holocaust. In it, one character who witnessed too much retells his story though the mouth of a ventriloquists dummy. Which, in reality was golem.Report

  2. Tod Kelly says:

    Man, this was most excellent, JL.Report