English, Reviews

Ophir and Rosen-Zvi’s “Goy”

Adi Ophir and Ishay Rosen-Zvi, Goy: Israel’s Multiple Others and the Birth of the Gentile (Oxford University Press, 2018)

Review by Mira Balberg

In Erica Jong’s novel Fear of Flying, the protagonist Isadora Wing relates her flirtatious conversation with the British charmer Dr. Adrian Goodlove, in which he complains about the fact that only Jews are allowed to make jokes about Jews (a complaint to be famously repeated decades later in Seinfeld).  “Why should I be deprived of the pleasure of masochistic Jewish humor just because I’m a goy?” he asks. Isadora then comments to herself: “He sounded so goyish saying goy.”

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