Amos Oz (May 04, 1939 - December 28, 2018)
Born: 4th May, 1939
Died: 28th December, 2018
Nationality: Israeli
Profession/Occupation: Writer
Region: Jerusalem, Israel

Amos Oz Facts

Biography

Amos Oz, original name Amos Klausner, (born May 4, 1939, Jerusalem--died December 28, 2018), Israeli novelist, short-story writer, and essayist in whose works Israeli society is unapologetically scrutinized.

Oz was educated at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at the University of Oxford. He served in the Israeli army (1957-60, 1967, and 1973). After the Six-Day War in 1967, he became active in the Israeli peace movement and with organizations that advocated a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In addition to writing, he worked as a part-time schoolteacher and labourer.

Oz's symbolic, poetic novels reflect the splits and strains in Israeli culture. Locked in conflict are the traditions of intellect and the demands of the flesh, reality and fantasy, rural Zionism and the longing for European urbanity, and the values of the founding settlers and the perceptions of their skeptical offspring. Oz felt himself unable to share the optimistic outlook and ideological certainties of Israel's founding generation, and his writings present an ironic view of life in Israel.

His works of fiction include Artsot ha-tan (1965; Where the Jackals Howl, and Other Stories), Mikha?el sheli (1968; My Michael), La-ga?at ba-mayim, la-ga?at ba-ruah (1973; Touch the Water, Touch the Wind), Kufsah shehora (1987; Black Box), and Matsav ha-shelishi (1991; The Third State). Oto ha-yam (1999; The Same Sea) is a novel in verse. The memoir Sipur ?al ahavah ve-hoshekh (2002; A Tale of Love and Darkness) drew wide critical acclaim. Temunot me-haye ha-kefar (2009; Scenes from Village Life) and Ben haverim (2012; Between Friends) were, respectively, a novel set in an Israeli village and a collection of short stories set on a kibbutz. Ha-Besorah ?al-pi Yehudah (2014; "The Gospel According to Judas") investigates the nature of betrayal by weaving a contemporary dialogue about Israel with an alternate history of Judas Iscariot and his motivations. The novel received the German Internationaler Literaturpreis (International Literature Prize) in 2015.

Oz was among the editors of Siah lohamim (1968; The Seventh Day), a collection of soldiers' reflections on the Six-Day War. His political essays are collected in such volumes as Be-or ha-tekhelet ha-?azah (1979; Under This Blazing Light) and Be-?etsem yesh kan shete milhamot (2002; "But These Are Two Different Wars"). How to Cure a Fanatic (2006) is an English-language collection of two essays by Oz and an interview with him. With historian Fania Oz-Sulzberger (his daughter) he wrote Jews and Words (2012), a collection of meditations on, and analyses of, various Jewish texts.

Top 46 Amos Oz quotes

A conflict begins and ends in the hearts and minds of people, not in the hilltops.
Begins
Conflict
Ends
Hearts
Minds
People
All of my novels are democracies.
Democracy
Novels
And in this respect, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been a tragedy, a clash between one very powerful, very convincing, very painful claim over this land and another no less powerful, no less convincing claim.
Another
Been
Between
Claim
Clash
Conflict
Convincing
Has-been
Land
Less
Over
Painful
Powerful
Respect
But for 30 years, Orthodox leaders have tipped the balance between hawks and doves, and have been in a position to determine who forms a coalition and who runs the country.
Balance
Been
Between
Coalition
Country
Determine
Doves
Forms
Hawks
Leaders
Orthodox
Position
Runs
Who
But The Same Sea is set precisely in this Israel, which never makes it to the news headlines anywhere. It is a novel about everyday people far removed from fundamentalism, fanaticism nationalism, or militancy of any sort.
About
Any
Anywhere
Every Day
Everyday people
Fanaticism
Far
Fundamentalism
Headlines
Israel
Makes
Nationalism
Never
News
Every single pleasure I can imagine or have experienced is more delightful, more of a pleasure, if you take it in small sips, if you take your time. Reading is not an exception.
Delightful
Every
Exception
Experienced
I can
Imagine
More
Pleasure
Reading
Single
Small
Take
Time
Time reading
I find the family the most mysterious and fascinating institution in the world.
Family
Fascinating
Find
Institution
Most
Mysterious
World
I have seen for the first time in 100 years of conflict, the two peoples - the Israeli people and the Palestinian people - are ahead of their leaderships.
Ahead
Conflict
First
First time
Israeli
Palestinian
Palestinian people
People
Seen
Time
Two
Years
I recommend the art of slow reading.
Art
Reading
Recommend
Slow
I was born and bred in a tiny, low-ceilinged ground-floor apartment.
Apartment
Born
Bred
I was born
Tiny
I wrote a novel about Israelis who live their own lives on the slope of a volcano. Near a volcano one still falls in love, one still gets jealous, one still wants a promotion, one still gossips.
About
Falls
Gets
Gossips
Israelis
Jealous
Live
Lives
Love
Near
Novel
Own
Promotion
Slope
I wrote The Same Sea not as a political allegory about Israelis and Palestinians. I wrote it about something much more gutsy and immediate. I wrote it as a piece of chamber music.
About
Allegory
Chamber
Immediate
Israelis
More
Much
Music
Palestinians
Piece
Political
Same
Sea
Something
If we don't stop somewhere, if we don't accept an unhappy compromise, unhappy for both sides, if we don't learn how to unhappily coexist and contain our burned sense of injustice - if we don't learn how to do that, we end up in a doomed state.
Accept
Both
Both sides
Burned
Coexist
Compromise
Contain
Doomed
End
How
Injustice
Learn
Our
Sense
In many ways, I regard Sharon and Arafat as birds of a feather.
Arafat
Birds
Feather
Many
Regard
Sharon
Ways
Israel of the coastal plain, where eight out of ten Israeli Jews live far removed from the occupied territories, from the fiery Jerusalem, from the religious and nationalistic conflicts, is unknown to the outside world, almost unknown to itself.
Almost
Coastal
Conflicts
Eight
Far
Fiery
Israel
Israeli
Itself
Jerusalem
Jews
Live
Occupied
Out
On my parents' scale of values, the more Western something was, the more cultured it was considered.
Considered
More
Parents
Scale
Something
Values
Western
One of the things I wanted to introduce in The Same Sea beyond transcending the conflict, is the fact that deep down below all our secrets are the same.
Below
Beyond
Conflict
Deep
Deep down
Down
Fact
Introduce
One of the things
Our
Same
Sea
Secrets
Things
The actual gap between Labor, Likud and the new central party is microscopic.
Actual
Between
Central
Gap
Labor
New
Party
Two children of same cruel parent look at one another and see in each other the image of the cruel parent or the image of their past oppressor. This is very much the case between Jew and Arab: It's a conflict between two victims.
Another
Arab
Between
Case
Children
Conflict
Cruel
Each
Image
Jew
Look
Much
Oppressor
Other
Well, my definition of a tragedy is a clash between right and right.
Between
Clash
Definition
Right
Tragedy
Well
It is crystal clear to me that if Arabs put down a draft resolution blaming Israel for the recent earthquake in Iran it would probably have a majority, the U.S. would veto it and Britain and France would abstain.
Abstain
Arabs
Blaming
Britain
Clear
Crystal
Down
Draft
Earthquake
France
Iran
Israel
Majority
Me
I was born in a tiny little enclave of terrified Jewish refugees, less than half a million of them, with no clear perspective of a future - hopes, yes, but no clear perspective.
Born
Clear
Future
Half
Hopes
I was born
Jewish
Less
Little
Million
Perspective
Refugees
Terrified
Than
Throughout my childhood, a heavy cloud of pain and disappointment and insecurity hovered over my home, my little street, my neighborhood, Jewish Jerusalem, Jewish Israel.
Childhood
Cloud
Disappointment
Heavy
Home
Insecurity
Israel
Jerusalem
Jewish
Little
Neighborhood
Over
Pain
Street
I have mixed feelings about Jerusalem. It is fascinating, it is beautiful, it is tragic, and it is extremely attractive to all kinds of fanatics or redeemers, world reformers, self-appointed prophets or messiahs. I find this fascinating, but I don't think I would like to live in the middle of this. I need my distance.
About
Attractive
Beautiful
Distance
Extremely
Fanatics
Fascinating
Feelings
Find
Jerusalem
Kinds
Like
Live
Middle
Every country in the world should follow the example of President Trump and move the embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. But simultaneously, there should be an embassy of all countries in the world in East Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Palestine.
Capital
Countries
Country
East
Embassy
Every
Example
Follow
Israel
Jerusalem
Move
Palestine
President
President trump
The opposite of compromise is fanaticism and death.
Compromise
Death
Fanaticism
Opposite
Writing in modern Hebrew is a bit like playing chamber music inside a huge, empty cathedral. If you are not very careful with the echoes, you may evoke some monstrosities.
Bit
Careful
Cathedral
Chamber
Echoes
Empty
Evoke
Hebrew
Huge
Inside
Like
May
Modern
Music
There is a difference between myself and some of the peace people in Europe: whereas they think that the ultimate evil in the world is war, I think the ultimate evil in the world is aggression, and aggression sometimes must be repelled by force.
Aggression
Between
Difference
Europe
Evil
Force
I think
Must
Myself
Peace
People
Repelled
Some
Sometimes
I am not a pacifist in terms of turning the other cheek.
Am
Cheek
I am
Other
Pacifist
Terms
Turning
Nobody ever predicted, a week before President Sadat came to Jerusalem in 1977, that his arrival would be the beginning of a peace process that would end up in an - unhappy - Israeli-Egyptian peace. We have seen peace with Egypt. We have seen peace with Jordan. We have seen the handshake between Rabin and Arafat - things are possible.
Arafat
Arrival
Before
Beginning
Between
Came
Egypt
End
Ever
Handshake
His
Jerusalem
Jordan
Nobody
I realised at the age of 16 that unless I read the gospels, I would never have access to Renaissance art, to the music of Bach or the novels of Dostoevsky. So in the evenings, when the other boys went to play basketball or chase girls - I had no chance in either - I found my comfort in Jesus.
Access
Age
Art
Bach
Basketball
Boy
Chance
Chase
Comfort
Either
Evenings
Found
Girl
Gospels
Jesus was born a Jew, and he died a Jew. It never occurred to him to establish a new religion. He never crossed himself: he had no reason to. He never set one foot in a church. He went to synagogue.
Born
Church
Crossed
Died
Establish
Foot
Had
He
Him
Himself
Jesus
Jew
Never
New
Israel should aspire to be a decent country. That's good enough for me.
Aspire
Country
Decent
Enough
Good
Israel
Me
Should
I love Israel, but I don't like it very much.
I love
Israel
Like
Love
Much
Very
Very often, fanaticism begins at home. It begins inside the family. It begins with the urge to change our kin, to change our beloved ones for their own good because we think we know better than them what is good and what is bad for them, what is right and what is wrong in their thinking.
Bad
Because
Begins
Beloved
Better
Change
Family
Fanaticism
Good
Home
Inside
Kin
Know
Often
I listen to my political rivals sometimes with fear and trembling, sometimes with awe, sometimes with near panic, but always with a curiosity of nuances, curiosity for the language, curiosity for the story behind the 'impossible' position.
Always
Awe
Behind
Curiosity
Fear
Impossible
Language
Listen
Near
Nuances
Panic
Political
Position
Rivals
I think loathing begets fanaticism, and in the end, loathing begets hatred and violence.
Begets
End
Fanaticism
Hatred
I think
In the end
Think
Violence
Trump is many things. He is pampered. He is an immature man. He is a teenager craving unconditional, endless love from everybody.
Craving
Endless
Everybody
He
Immature
Love
Man
Many
Pampered
Teenager
Things
Trump
Unconditional
My parents - they tried to become American, they tried to become British, they tried to become Scandinavian - nobody wanted them, anywhere.
American
Anywhere
Become
British
Nobody
Parents
Scandinavian
Them
Tried
Wanted
When you're on the battlefield, you switch off your soul; otherwise, you would die of terror - you would die of fear. You switch off your soul, and you act like an animal or a machine.
Act
Animal
Battlefield
Die
Fear
Like
Machine
Off
Otherwise
Soul
Switch
Terror
Would
You
'Oz' means strength - and it also means courage.
Also
Courage
Means
Oz
Strength
I have almost never written about my experience as a soldier on the battlefield, because I tried, and I found that it is beyond my capacity to describe the battlefield. The battlefield consists mostly of smells, and it is very difficult to describe smells in words - very difficult indeed.
About
Almost
Battlefield
Because
Beyond
Capacity
Consists
Describe
Difficult
Experience
Found
I tried
Indeed
Mostly
I've been called a traitor a few times in my life by some of my countrymen.
Been
Countrymen
Few
Life
My life
Some
Times
Traitor
The idea that all Israelis are villains is a childish idea. Israel is the most deeply divided, argumentative society. You'll never find two Israelis that agree with one another - it's hard to find even one who agrees with himself or herself.
Agree
Another
Childish
Deeply
Divided
Even
Find
Hard
Herself
Himself
Idea
Israel
Israelis
Most
Literature is always about bygone times. It's always looking back in time with a certain perspective. I look at bygone life which no longer exists, and as I said, I look at it without nostalgia but without anger, either. I look at it with criticism and with compassion. I look at it with curiosity.
About
Always
Anger
Back
Certain
Compassion
Criticism
Curiosity
Either
Exists
Life
Literature
Longer
Look
Happiness as a human condition is something I never believed in. I think there are moments of happiness. I don't think there is a lasting happiness. I think this is unthinkable.
Believed
Condition
Happiness
Human
Human condition
I think
Lasting
Moments
Never
Something
Think
Unthinkable

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