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May 04, 1990 - Image 41

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1990-05-04

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

1

Three years later, Kaplan
was able to locate Haasse,
who told him she re-
membered Lewis Kaplan
well. She still had a copy of
the contract giving him
rights to translate her book.
She hadn't heard from him
in so long she decided he had
lost interest in the project.
With Haasse's approval,
Kaplan sought to have his
father's translation publish-
ed. He sent the book to major
publishers in New York,
with no success, before corn-
ing across Academy Chicago
Publishers.
Anita Miller at the
Chicago publishing company
told Kaplan to bring the
manuscript to her.
With a cardboard box con-
taining the 1,100-page
manuscript under his arm,
Kaplan arrived at the door.
He handed Miller his
father's work, complete with
sentences scratched out and
words scrawled in, along
with 75 pages he himself had
cleanly typed.
"I read Dr. Kaplan's 75
pages and on the strength of
them we signed a contract
for the book," Miller says.
Miller edited the work and
Academy Chicago renamed
it In A Dark Wood Wander-
ing, taken from a quote by
Dante. It was published in
1989.
Kaplan says he still hopes
to publish Jesus and
Menachem along with a book
his father wrote about Latin
American liberator, Simon
Bolivar.
"My father left all kinds of
things incomplete," he says.
"My mother always told me,
`You have to finish them.' "
Kaplan also says he feels
driven to continue his
father's projects because
Lewis Kaplan was a man of
Lewis Kaplan: A shy and sensitive man who loved languages, literature and "all kinds of crazy cheeses."
great talent whose abilities
were never fully appreciated
tian Dutch publisher in
or any identification, it was
While in the hospital,
in his life.
Grand Rapids.
left in a briefcase and set in
Kaplan made an Indian belt
"And because I loved
Eerdmans
was
not
inter-
a
closet
in
the
Kaplan
home.
for and wrote letters to his
him." ❑
Jesus
and
ested
in
It
would
sit
there
for
20
16-year-old son, Kalman. In
Menachem. But a company
years.
one letter he said, "To me,
representative
suggested
you were and still remain
Kaplan send the accompany-
the most beautiful child I
alman Kaplan stared
ing work, The Forest of Ex-
at the papers in the
ever saw, and this very day I
pectations, to a New York
brown
briefcase.
Clear-
cannot look at an early pic-
publisher.
ly, it was a manuscript, a
ture of you without tears
He'd never heard of The
translation his father had
coming to my eyes." He
Forest of Expectations.
done. But of what?
spoke of himself as a man
By chance, Kaplan's
driven by a love of art, and
Also in the briefcase was a
mother found among her
told Kalman that he must be
partially completed transla-
late husband's items a piece
the head of the household in
tion of a Dutch book, Jesus
of paper on which was
his father's absence.
and Menachem. Kaplan
written Het Voud Der Ver-
Kaplan worked on his
decided this book and the
wachting and the name
Het
Voud
Der
translation of
numerous unidentified
Hella
Haasse. Realizing the
Verwachting until his death
pages might be linked.
words were that of a book
0 . Kalman remembers see-
and an author, Kaplan went
Thinking a Christian
ing his father typing the
to the Library of Congress in
publisher would be inter-
night before he suffered a
1979. There, he discovered
ested in the work, Kaplan
heart attack . in 1958. He
Het
Voud Der Verwachting
took
all
the
pages
he
found
was 47.
The Forest of Expecta-
and
in
the
briefcase
and
sent
But his manuscript was
The notebook that contained the unidentified manuscript.
tions were one and the same.
them to Eerdmans, a Chris-
forgotten. With no title page

K

TI-IP .r1P-mniT

NIFIAlq

.14

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