La vieja religión By David Mamet

Another bargain find at my local bookshop, I picked this up in high school having no idea who David Mamet was or how little I'd understand this novel. I know if I went back and re-read the thing, I'd likely get it and probably enjoy it. But I've not done that. Instead State and Main became one of my top 5 favorite movies of all time. David Mamet Mamet has a gift for direct description and narrative concision. He sees the universal in the specific.

Reminds me of a DFW story in Brief Interviews where the victim of a horrendous act is in a unique and almost enviable position, having learned something about people which most of us will never see. David Mamet A great experiment, if not a great novel. This true crime story is stripped of most of its physical details and instead presented as a series of fragmented interior monologues-- revealing at times but often too esoteric, too obtuse. Even after spending so much time in his head, the character feels opaque. David Mamet A powerful, sad book. Written in an experimental style that is a little difficult at first, but soon, I found myself lost in the main character's mind; which, by the way is where a lot of the book takes place.

This book is a strong cry against anti-Semitism, against racism, and several other -isms. The novel is based on true events. The book jacket almost gives the whole thing away, but it's worth the read simply to experience Mamet's storytelling style.

I have never read anything like this, and that is not easy to say nowadays. The novel is experimental, literary fiction. And the literary fiction moniker is not just slapped on to give it some class, as it often is with fiction, today. This is a novel about character first. There is a plot, but it takes some time to get to it. There is much that many writing teachers would say, You should cut that, it's not advancing the plot. And maybe that's right, but if it were cut, then it would no longer be David Mamet's book; it no longer stand out as it does.

Don't read this if you are easily bored because nothing is happening. If you are that kind of reader, this book will most likely make you want to pull your hair out and throw the book across the room while you scream..... David Mamet Although based on historical fact, this is more about the imagined personal philosophy of a Jewish man accused, 'tried and convicted of the rape-murder of a 13 year old girl than it is about an 'old religion'. It highlights the latent antisemitism of the locale and era in the way evidence was ignored and prejudice was instigated. This is not any easy read, nor is it a comfortable one. David Mamet

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For his second novel, playwright David Mamet chose as a subject the 1914 trial of Leo Frank, a Jew living in Georgia who was falsely accused of the rape and murder of a young girl at the factory he managed. Convicted on the perjurious testimony of the actual killer and several of his coworkers, Frank was later abducted from prison by a mob and lynched. They covered his head, and they ripped his pants off and castrated him and hung him from the tree. A photographer took a picture showing the mob, one boy grinning at the camera, the body hanging, the legs covered by a blanket tied around the waist. The photo, reproduced as a postcard, was sold for many years in stores throughout the South.

The events are straightforward, and Mamet leaves no doubt over the course of the story as to the final outcome. But he does not portray the events so much as he probes the state of mind of Leo Frank, never relenting from the terse, stylized language familiar to fans of his plays. At the beginning of The Old Religion, despite his awareness of the growing anti-Semitism in the South (or perhaps because of it), Frank suppresses his heritage as much as possible. Even at a seder, he pronounced the word kosher gingerly, as if to say, I don't disclaim that I have heard it, but I do not wish to say it freely, as to arrogate it to myself on the mere precedent of blood. But as the trial goes on, we are shown Frank's growing realization that, although he has embraced the American way of life, it will not embrace him in return.

La vieja religión

I gave this book multiple attempts. But it stunk stunk stunk! I returned it to the library without getting through the first 20 pages. The writing style is not satisfying. The characters are flat. Drek. David Mamet Good premise delivered weird David Mamet Not bad. David Mamet Given Mamet's prominence as a dramatist I find it hard to understand why this superb novel is not better known. Based on the tragic story of Leo Frank, a Jewish business man who was lynched in 1914 for a murder he had not committed, this novel explores the fragile integration of Jews in the racist society of the Bible belt. Mamet does a wonderful job of trying to recreate the state of mind of Leo Frank in the days before the murder that's going to upend his life, during his trial and the few months he spends in prison. Mamet reflects on the difference between religion and superstition, Christians and Jews, truth and lies. The book has real philosophical depth while chronicling a shameful miscarriage of justice. Informed by Mamet's vast knowledge of the Talmud, the novel remains accessible thanks to his well-known ear for sharp dialogue. David Mamet this book took a terrible story, sucked the blood from it, gave it xanax, a horrible case of OCD, and made me roll my eyes from beginning to end. i would have said that the true story of a racially motivated set up and castration/lynching would be impossible to numb. lesson learned. David Mamet