Kaddish Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Kaddish

This is a combination of journal and research project which Wieseltier tackled in response to his father's death. The author, a literary critic and journalist, was not a particularly observant Jew up to that time, but decided to take the Orthodox course of going to the synogogue to say kaddish, the prayer for the dead, every day for the year following his father's death. He also researched the history of kaddish and various rabbis' commentaries and tales on the subject. The result is a very thoughtful and often aphoristic book, although the exhaustive historical and folktale material can be tiresome. "What death really says is: THINK." "Thoughts begin with definitions and then are held back by them." "People with secrets are not dishonest. They are unhappy. They want to be loved but not to be known." "Your father dies and you are free. And what do you do with your freedom? You think, and write, and pray, about your father. Congratulations!"
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The review of this Book prepared by David Loftus

Chapter Analysis of Kaddish

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   very sensitive (sigh) Time/era of story    -   1980's-1999 Political/social activism    -   Yes Plotlet:    -   religious issues Family, loving relations    -   Yes Special relationship with    -   father Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   journalist Age:    -   40's-50's Ethnicity/Nationality    -   Jewish


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Northeast City?    -   Yes City:    -   New York

Writing Style

Amount of dialog    -   little dialog

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Leon Wieseltier Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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