Literary Nonfiction. African & African American Studies. Jewish Studies. Middle Eastern Studies. What do we mean by home? In DRAWN FROM WATER, American Jew Dina Elenbogen explores her thirty-year friendship with Ethiopian Jewish immigrants in Israel as they struggle in a new country while dealing with her own desire to join them there. Thirty years ago, Operation Moses airlifted thousands of Ethiopian Jews to Israel, where today they, immigrants from other years, and descendants form a community over 100,000 strong. Through the stories of the children Osnat, Elad, and their siblings, Elenbogen raises questions about religion, assimilation, and cultural identity. The author's poetic voice examines immigration in all its forms, success and failure, adaptation and resistance. Black Ethiopians suffer discrimination, and are hindered by cultural and language difficulties, yet the children eventually attend college, marry, and have families of their own. Dina's personal journey parallels theirs, but poetry and the arts give her a bridge between her life in America and her desire for Israel.
Dina Elenbogen is the author of the poetry collection APPLES OF THE EARTH (Spuyten Duyvil, 2005) and the work of literary nonfiction, DRAWN FROM WATER: AN AMERICAN POET, AN ETHIOPIAN FAMILY, AN ISRAELI STORY (BkMk Press at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, 2015). She is the recipient of two fellowships and an award from the Illinois Arts Council. Her work has been published in numerous magazines including Prairie Schooner, Poet Lore, Tikkun, Bellevue Literary Review, Paterson Literary Review, New York Chicago and numerous anthologies. She holds a poetry MFA from the University of Iowa and teaches creative writing at the University of Chicago's Graham School. She lives in Evanston, Illinois, with her husband, Steve Siegel, and their two children, Sarina and Ilan.Author City: Evanston, IL USA