Uri Orlev Turns 80: Celebrating the Life of a Great Israeli Writer and the Anniversary of One of his Greatest Books

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Uri Orlev Turns 80
Celebrating the Life of a Great Israeli Writer—and the Anniversary of One of His Greatest Books
An Exhibit Northwestern University Library: January–March 2011

 

Uri Orlev, perhaps the world’s most celebrated—and certainly most translated—author of books about the Holocaust for children and young people, celebrates his 80th birthday on February 24, 2011. At Northwestern, we have special reason to celebrate with him, for Mr. Orlev has sent us close to 200 different editions of his books in over 35 languages, ranging from Albanian and Assamese to Urdu and Vietnamese, all of them available for loan from the Curriculum Collection in 5North of our Main Library.
 
We also take this opportunity to celebrate another important anniversary: the publication of Uri Orlev’s first—and to this day most enduring—international success: The Island on Bird Street [Hebrew orig. title: ha-I bi-Rehov ha tsiporim] by Keter in Jerusalem in 1981. This exciting story of a young boy’s survival in the Warsaw Ghetto under the Nazis—along with his much-loved pet, the white mouse Snow—parallels Orlev’s own childhood. Uri Orlev was born Jerzy Henryk Orlowski in Warsaw in 1931. As a young boy, he lived in the Warsaw Ghetto. When Poland was invaded, Orlev’s father, a physician and reserve officer in the Polish Army, was captured by the Russians; his mother was killed by the Nazis. After being smuggled out of the ghetto and hidden by Polish families, Orlev and his younger brother were caught and sent to Bergen-Belsen. They were freed two years later, immigrated to pre-state Israel, and were reunited with their father in 1954.
 
This exhibit features a number of translations of The Island on Bird Street, along with an edition of the original work in Hebrew. We also display a copy of an archival photograph from the Uri Orlev Collection in the Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections showing Uri as a 14-year-old survivor arriving by train in Palestine in 1945. Finally, we are especially delighted that Mr. Orlev has written a letter to today’s Northwestern students. In his letter, the author expresses his pride and excitement that he can reach out to Northwestern students through the books which are exhibited here today—and the many more available for study and enjoyment housed in Northwestern’s library.
Happy Birthday, Mr. Orlev!
 
 
Exhibit Bibliography
 
Orlev, Uri. Granny Knits. Trans. Edward A. Levenston. Ill. Eitan, Ora. New Delhi: National Book Trust, India, 1999. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71g.
 
---. Ha-I Bi-Rehov Hatsiporim. Trans. Ora Eitan. Yerushalayim: Keter, 1981. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71i.
 
---. The Island on Bird Street. Trans. Hillel Halkin. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1984. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71iX.
 
---. Kabe no muko no machi. Trans. Minoru Kume. Tokyo: Kaiseisha, 1993. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXJ.
 
---. The Lady with the Hat. Trans. Hillel Halkin. 1st American ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1995. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71la.
 
---. A Lion for Michael. Ill. Gleich, Jacky. New York: Mondo, 2001. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71hu.
 
---. L'isola in via degli uccelli. Trans. Mariarosa Giardina Zannini. Nuova ed. Milano: Salani Editore, 2009. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXI.
 
---. Lydia, Queen of Palestine. Trans. Hillel Halkin. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Puffin Books, 1995. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71l.
 
---. The Man from the Other Side. Trans. Hillel Halkin. New York, N.Y., U.S.A.: Puffin Books, 1995. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71m 1995.
 
---. Niao que jie shang de gu dao. Trans. Li Wenjun yi. Guo ji an tu sheng jiang huo jiang zuo jia shu xi. [Shijiazhuang]: Hebei shao nian er tong chu ban she, 2000. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXCH.
 
---. Ön i Fågelgatan. Trans. Carla Wiberg. Stockholm: Rabén & Sjögren, 2000. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXSW.
 
---. Sziget a romok kozott. Trans. Kodaly Daniel. Budapest: Animus, 2003. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXH.
 
---. Una isla entre las ruinas. Trans. Pablo Valero Buenechea. Juvenil Alfaguara 407. Madrid: Alfaguara, 1991. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXS.
 
---. Une île, rue des oiseaux. Trans. Michèle Tauber and d'Anne Rabinovitch. Mon bel oranger. Paris: Hachette Jeunesse, 2001. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXF.
 
---. Un'isola in via delle rondini. Trans. Paola Bertolino. I Libri Verdi Junior 12. [Torino]: Archimede, 1994. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXI 1994.
 
---. Wyspa na ulicy Ptasiej. Trans. Ludwik Jerzy Kern. Warszawa: Nasza Ksiegarnia, 1990. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.004 O71iXPO.
 
Orlev, Uri, and Pamela Pollack. Hairy Tuesday. Ill. Gleich, Jacky. New York: Mondo, 1999. MAIN Curriculum (5 North - Main Library) 370.002 O71haf.
 
Articles about Uri Orlev in the Exhibit
"Uri Orlev." Something About the Author. Vol. 135, 2003. 160-66.
 
Khorana, Meena. "Uri Orlev: Celebrating the Indomitable Spirit of Childhood." Bookbird 34 2 (1996): 6-8.