Free summary and analysis of the events in Bernard Malamud’s The Magic Barrel that won’t make you snore. We promise. Complete summary of Bernard Malamud’s The Magic Barrel. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of The Magic Barrel. Bernard Malamud’s short story, “The Magic Barrel,” was first published in the Partisan Review in , and reprinted in in Malamud’s first volume of short .

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Traditional matchmaking is contrasted with passionate love, and the rabbinical student Leo Finkle came to God because he did not love Him. I found this to be incontrovertibly true, and was the very aspect I enjoyed most about his stories.

Yet, the story can also be read as a psychological postmodern text, featuring a Salzman, who is not a biblical angel and heavenly matchmaker but the alter ego of a very troubled young man. Che senso ha, scrivere, senza cercare se stessi?

Many years ago I read Malamud’s “The Fixer” and never forgot it. This highly legalistic book demands perfect obedience and sets up the rites of the Day of Atonement in precise detail.

In the following essay, he places the bbernard within the context of Jewish fiction of the s and focuses on the theme of intergenerational relations. Ah, this is a book about life all right, but it’s a book in which the vision is almost tunnel vision. View all 8 comments.


Unable to barre, he dismisses him. On the surface, The Magic Barrel is most notably about Jews and their jobs. Checkouts were modest, around two to three a year, except for, and – years the book sat undisturbed sitting shelfa Educated high school and two years college.

East Dane Designer Men’s Fashion. It may appease more, though, to readers who are more culturally related to Malamud Bernard ‘s experiences.

Why is it called The Magic Barrel? – Magic Barrel

Born in Russian Poland, Antin immigrated to Boston as a child in and became a social worker in the immigrant neighborhoods of that city. We may also have discussed how Malamud is less interested in the reality of Jewish life than in the metaphorical potential of Jewish identity: We should only accept ambiguity after exhausting all procedures and even then realize that someone else may find the key to clear up the ambiguity.

Though none of the tales have women protagonists, almost all of them have women as agents: Field, New York University Press,pp. Many of the individual stories collected in The Magic Barrel depict the search for hope and meaning mahic the bleak enclosures of poor urban settings. With each story, he tells a complete story of merit within malamuf few pages and goes onto the next. I’ve wanted to read Bernard Malamud for years and finally did it.

It was an old library copy, so old that the publisher was Farrar Straus and Cudahy Inc. He shuddered, saying softly, it malqmud thus with us all.


Finkle knows the word but not the spirit; and he makes it clear that in a secret part of his heart he knows it. He will have learned that the barrel in which Salzman keeps his pictures is then indeed a magic barrel, for love is a magic that cannot be bernzrd by the normal laws of logic.

Field and Joyce W.

Why is it called The Magic Barrel?

Set up a giveaway. Write a customer review. He summarizes the attractions of three young women to Finkle, listing their age, appearance.

After all, she expected to meet a biblical prophet, a man “enamored with God,” and instead found herself walking malqmud a man incapable of passion either in the physical or the spiritual senses of the term.

I was pleasantly surprised by some of Malamud’s stories, while others left me cold. The wasted ex-coffee salesman, the harassed landlord, the loner rabbinical student, they all se Notes on a Narrow Slice of Life So who could say that Bernard Malamud didn’t write well?

In Malamud brought out his second novel, The Assistant, the tale of an impoverished Brooklyn grocer who becomes a kind of Jewish everyman.