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April 05, 1968 - Image 7

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1968-04-05

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

To a Detroiter went second prize!
for a story adjudged among the'
17 best of the last year published
in "Short Stories 1968 -- the 0.
Henry Awards," just issued by
Doubleday.
Mrs. Robert (Esther N.) Broner
has been awarded the second prize
for her story, "The New Nobility,"
which appeared in Epoch (winter
1967 issue), a Cornell University
publication.
Mrs. Broner is the daughter of
Mr. and Mrs. Paul Masserman of
Coolidge Rd., Oak Park, and is
married to the artist Robert
Broner. They have two daughters
and twin sons. Mr. and Mrs. Broner
are both members of the faculty
of Wayne State University. She is
the author of a play, of a novella
and short stories, her works have
appeared in numerous magazines,
and she is working on a novel.
The editor of the volume con-
taining the 1968 prize stories,
William Abrahams, is senior
editor of Atlantic Monthly Press.

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In his introduction, Abrahams
has this to say about Mrs. Broner's
story: ''It is the atmosphere of
Mrs. Broner's story, reducing and
discarding one by one the pieties
of public speech and life, and find-
ing a brilliant image of civic ob-
literation: 'One day, during the
summer session, after a long
drought, while the children suf-
fered from prickly heat, Celia
walked down a path where the sun
was merciless. A veterans' mall, I
in honor of students killed in World
War II, had been torn up to make
room for classroom buildings. The
buildings shone white, pre-cast
concrete, like more sidewalk. Along
the path the university had planted
geraniums'."
(In fact, the ''Veterans Mall" at
Wayne State University was desig-
nated for that very purpose. Today,
there are two buildings dominating
the mall).
Mrs. Broner's theme is like a
commentary on world affairs.
It has a Jewish theme—Jewish
characters passing opinions on
anti-Semitism, on human rela-
tions on events that electrified
the world in recent years. There
is even a reference to Julius and
. Ethel Rosenberg and to Judge
Kaufman in that historic case,
and there is the matter of Jew-
ish allegiance to holiday ob-
servances, to a son's response to
the Passover appeal.
Celia had lived near Ethel Rosen-
berg's mother and in relation to
the Rosenbergs' •end and the
judge's action, Mrs. Broner's nar-
rative contains this comment:
"Judge Kaufman, inaccurate in
fact, stared at Celia from the news-
paper. She became an anti-Semite,
looking at the mama boy face, the
pudgy features, the oblique glance,
in that era of disloyal Jews and
one terribly loyal judge. The list
was added to for her with David
Greenglass, fingering his sister
and brother-in-law, Harry Gould,
the courier, and Morton Sobell."
Indeed, in the theme there enter
the former issues of the boycott
of German-made goods and the
present popularity of the Volks-
wagen, the Negro issue and Martin ,
Luther King, others who play roles
in our time.
Mrs. Broner was entertained by
her publishers, Harcourt, Brace
and World, while on a visit to New
York last week. Her latest work
of fiction entitled "Journal/Noc-
turnal and Seven Stories," will be
published in early fall. The pub-
lishers also have an option on a
novel on which she is now working.
A reading of the musical play,
"Colonel Higginson," will be staged
April 20 at 1:30 p.m. in the Com-
munity Arts Auditorium of Wayne
State University. The reading is
sponsored by the Michigan Acad-
emy of Arts and Sciences, Ameri-
can Studies Association. The book
and lyrics are by Mrs. Broner and
the music by Morton Zieve. The
reading is open to the public.

HAVE A DELICIOUS

Manischem
PASSOVER

MRS. ROBERT BRONER

7

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* * *

Eudora Welty won first prize for
her story, "The Demonstrators"
and it is interesting to note that
Shlomo Katz won his prize for "My
Redeemer Cometh . . . ," a most
interesting Jewish theme, the story
having appeared in Midstream.
Selectees for the 1968 0. Henry
Short Stories, included in this
volume, and the titles of their
stories, include:
Norma Klain, "Magic;" Calvin
Kentfield, "Near the Line;" Nancy
Hale, "The Most Elegant Drawing
Room in Europe;" Gwen Gration,
"Teacher;" F. K. Franklin, "Nig-
ger Horse;" Brock Brower, "Storm
Still;" Jay Neugeboren, "Ebbets
Field:" James Baker Hall, "A
Kind of Savage;" David Stracton,
"Little ; Brother Nun;" Eldon
Branda, "The Dark Days of Christ-
mas;" John Updike, "Your Lover
Just Called;" Paul Tyner, "How
You Play the Game;" Marilyn
Harris, "Icarus Again; " Joyce
Carol Oates, "Where Are You
Going, Where Have. You Been."

Friday, April 5, 1968-7

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

The New Nobility,' Esther Broner's
Prize-Winning Story, in 0. Henry
Short Stories Collection for '68

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