A New Life Additional Summary

Bernard Malamud


(Masterpieces of American Literature)

Astro, Richard, and Jackson J. Benson, eds. The Fiction of Bernard Malamud. Corvallis: Oregon State University Press, 1977. Malamud was an instructor in English at Oregon State University from 1949 to 1961. This volume has been faithful to the papers as they were presented in a tribute to Malamud at a conference held at the university. Contains the opinions of several foremost American critics about Malamud’s work, interspersed with stories and anecdotes which make for lively reading. An extensive secondary bibliography is also provided.

Field, Leslie A., and Joyce W. Field, eds. Bernard Malamud: A Collection of Critical Essays. 1970. Rev. ed. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1975. This nine-essay volume is the modest version of the original 1970 publication, which compiled twenty-one of the most important essays on Malamud’s work in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Contains an interview with Malamud based on discussions he had with the authors in 1973. Places emphasis on Malamud’s Jewish background in the context of Israel, with an essay by Sheldon Norman Grebstein entitled “Bernard Malamud and the Jewish Movement.”

Ochshorn, Kathleen. The Heart’s Essential Landscape: Bernard Malamud’s Hero. New York: Peter Lang, 1990. Chapters on each of Malamud’s novels and his short-story collections. Seeks to continue a trend in Malamud criticism that views his heroes as tending toward the mensch and away from the schlemiel. Includes a bibliography but no notes.

Richman, Sidney. Bernard Malamud. Boston: Twayne, 1966. Although limited in scope, this criticism is a valuable overview of Malamud’s work to the mid-1960’s. Gives a sensitive reading of the author’s first three novels and his first two collections of stories.

Salzberg, Joel, ed. Critical Essays on Bernard Malamud. Boston: G. K. Hall, 1987. An excellent source for diverse material on Malamud’s writing; a must for Malamud scholars. Provides a strong introduction by Salzberg with much insight into Malamud’s work and his place in literature. The essays are well chosen; some are reprints, but there is a first printing of an essay by Sidney Richman entitled “Malamud’s Quarrel with God.”

Solotaroff, Robert. Bernard Malamud: A Study of the Short Fiction. Boston: Twayne, 1989. Divided into a section of essays on the short stories, a section on Malamud’s view of life and art, and a final section of selections from his major critics. Provides chronology and bibliography.