Season 3, Episode 4
In this second of our five-episode series with the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University (NEJS), we explore "The Imagined Childhood,” a short story originally published in Hebrew in 1979. Written by the prolific 20th-century Iraqi-born Israeli author Shimon Ballas, the story served as an epilogue to a collection of short stories whose narratives intersect with the author's early life in Baghdad.
Dr. Yuval Evri, Assistant Professor of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies and the Marash and Ocuin Chair in Ottoman, Mizrahi, and Sephardic Jewish Studies, takes us through the author's immigrant history and his multilingual engagement in Arabic, Hebrew, and French throughout his body of work.
Read the transcription for "The Imagined Childhood"
Hosted by Aaron Henne
Scholarship provided by Yuval Evri, PhD
Edited by Mark McClain Wilson
Story editing by Julie A. Lockhart with Aaron Henne
Featuring the voice of Jonathan C.K. Williams
Theme music composed by Michael Skloff and produced by Sam K.S.
Transcription by Dylan Southard
"The Imagined Childhood" Learning Resources
Learn more about:
"The Imagined Childhood," translated from the Hebrew by Eran Edry, can be found in Banipal, the Magazine of Modern Arab Literature.
Shimon Ballas published in Banipal
Translator Eran Edry
Operation Ezra & Nehemia - The Airlift of Iraqi Jews to Israel (1951 - 1952)
Al Bataween in Baghdad
Referenced in the episode:
King Faisal I of Iraq
Kol Ha'Am, Communist Newspaper
Watch with captions on YouTube:
ABOUT OUR EPISODE PARTNER
One of the largest and most diverse departments of its kind, the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University (NEJS) is dedicated to the critical investigation of the history, literature, and religion of Jews and Judaism, as well as adjacent cultures in the ancient and modern world (the ancient Near East, Christianity, Islam and modern Israel).