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Israeli Author & Filmmaker Visit

Etgar Keret, award-winning Israeli author & filmmaker, will speak to the SDSU community on Monday, Sept. 30.
Keret's event is free to all students, faculty and staff as well as the community.
Keret's event is free to all students, faculty and staff as well as the community.

Well-known Israeli author and filmmaker, Etgar Keret, is partnering with the San Diego State University’s Jewish Studies Program and the San Diego Jewish Academy to do a reading and discussion at SDSU.

With support from the Consulate General of Israel, Los Angeles and the Jewish Federation of San Diego County, Keret will be reading passages from his most recent book “Suddenly a Knock on the Door” which became an instant No. 1 bestseller in Israel.

A unique opportunity

Keret consistently produces bestsellers. His books are compiled of short stories, usually no longer than three to four pages, which offer a window into the realities of life in Israel today.

“His work sets him apart from other authors because of what he is able to accomplish in so few words,” said Risa Levitt Kohn, director of the SDSU Jewish Studies Program. “Keret doesn’t travel to California very often, so this is an amazing opportunity for our students and the San Diego community to hear from him.”

A different upbringing

In Israel, army service is compulsory. As a result, many of the youth in Israel, join the army immediately after they finish high school. Keret started writing while he was serving his time in the army.

“Writing was a way for me to remind myself who I truly was. It was a great discovery for me and I haven’t stopped writing ever since,” Keret said.

“Etgar’s stories provide a unique window into contemporary Israeli life.  Hearing from him will provide SDSU students with a snap-shot of Israel that differs significantly from what they are accustomed to hearing on the news or reading in the headlines,” said Levitt Kohn.

Award-winning author & filmmaker

Keret’s books have been translated into twenty-two different languages and he has won many prestigious awards for his books including the Book Publishers Association’s  Platinum Prize several times, the Chevalier medallion of France's Order of Arts and Letters, the Prime Minister`s Prize and the Ministry of Culture`s Cinema Prize in Israel.

As a filmmaker, Keret is the writer of several feature screenplays, including “Skin Deep,” which won first prize at several international film festivals and was awarded the Israeli Oscar. He directed his first movie “Jellyfish,” along with his wife Shira Geffen, and won the coveted Camera d'Or prize for best first feature at the Cannes Film Festival in 2007.

SDSU & SDJA

The San Diego State University’s Jewish Studies Program and the San Diego Jewish Academy, a K-12 Jewish day school, are partnering for the first time in bringing Keret to both of their student populations.

“Both the Jewish Studies Program and SDJA are all about Jewish learning and about creating a sense of community between our students and the local community,” Levitt Kohn said. “This seemed like the perfect opportunity to join forces to create an innovative program that will have Etgar speak to high school students, university students and the San Diego community in both English and Hebrew — all in one day.”

Event details

Etgar Keret will speak the SDSU community 11 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 30 at the Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center Ballroom. A book signing will follow the reading.

This event is free to all students, faculty and staff as well as the community. Please register in advance by email: jewishstudiesprogram@mail.sdsu.edu.

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