'Judah Waten was an often controversial figure in Australian literature whose stories of his Russian-Jewish family have been critically acclaimed for their lucidity, depth of feeling, and fine sense of comedy. David Carter has brought together an illuminating selection of Waten's stories, arranged in an autobiographical sequence that traces the author's life from his Russian background to his formative years as a writer and political activist.
'This 'discontinuous autobiography' creates a fresh perspective on themes of migration, Jewishness, political commitment, history, and the individual life in Judah Waten's writing. These themes are also explored in an informative and often poignant interview with Waten and in examples of his critical essays. In his stimulating introduction David Carter discusses the cultural politics of the author's life and his choice of fiction or memoir rather than full-length autobiography. A new generation of readers will be attracted to Judah Waten's work in the light of contemporary interests in multiculturalism and stories of migration.' (Publication summary)