Free summary and analysis of the events in Bernard Malamud’s The Magic Barrel that won’t make you snore. We promise. Use our free chapter-by-chapter summary and analysis of The Magic Barrel. It helps middle and high school students understand Bernard Malamud’s literary. Complete summary of Bernard Malamud’s The Magic Barrel. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of The Magic Barrel.

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There are no discussion topics on this book yet. I am not particularly a fan of short stories. There is an underlying optimism that is closely connected to the heartbreak be it correlation or causation.

Feb 16, Myles rated it really liked it Shelves: I quenched my thirst for great storytelling while trapped in airports and belted in seats on two planes today.

Paperbackpages. This last story focuses on Kessler, the defiant old man in need of “social security” and Gruber, the belligerent landlord who doesn’t want Kessler in the tenement anymore. Suddenly, others are smiling and gazing kindly at him. Even when Malamud writes a humorous story, it is filled with underlying doubt in human nature, concentrating on the tendency of people to try to be what they are not.

I could read them again and again. Why was the photo in the envelope?

No matter how late his start, or how many manuscripts he burned, this man was born to write. At a used-car lot he would no doubt kick the tires and play the role of a discriminating consumer; at the matchmaker’s he eyes each new prospect with similar suspicions. Retrieved December 31, from Encyclopedia.

I’m not familiar with Jewish literature or have ever been interested in it, so I really didn’t know what to malaud.

Bernard Malamud bibliography for additional details:. And it is through the figure of Stella—her name suggesting the ironic star that guides Finkle’s destiny—that the prospective rabbi hopes to “convert her to goodness, himself to God.

What Barthelme learned from Malamud is clear, and I would say that it’s some of Mzgic finer qualities.

The Magic Barrel by Bernard Malamud, |

National Book Award for Fiction Malamud was a late bloomer: Jan 19, Seth Fiegerman rated it it was amazing. He draws attention to men who treat women as chattel, who scapegoat them, objectify them, ignore their advice. These stories just have this quiet subtlety which lets the emotion ring through in such a natural seeming way. Feature for feature, even some of the ladies of the photographs could do better; but she lapsed forth to this heart–had lived, or wanted to–more than just wanted, perhaps regretted how she had lived–had somehow deeply suffered: Once there, it was a while before I had my bearings … I was overwhelmed by the beauty of Oregon, its vast skies, forests, coastal beaches, and the new life it offered, which I lived as best I could as I reflected on the old ….


How she had happened to be among the discards in Salzman’s barrel he could never guess, but he knew he must urgently go find her.

Through it all, Finkle will also discover more about himself, will voice for the first time things he did not know he knew about himself, and find himself pulled in a very unexpected direction. To this end, as he has been more studious than social for the past six years, he enlists the help of Pinye Salzman, a Jewish matchmaker.

It is already too late.

Nov 30, Rob rated it really liked it. We may also have discussed how Malamud is less interested in the reality of Jewish life than in the metaphorical potential of Jewish identity: No, the student doesn’t find a house in Rome, the would-be art critic abandons his research, the would-be lover lies about his Jewish origins and loses the beautiful girl, the buyer on credit never pays back, the so-called reader never reads, the shoemaker allows his daughter to marry an unsuitable man.

The Magic Barrel

Has wonderful wholesale business. And he doesn’t think that reading more books can give her that. Nearest to my heart was A Summer’s Readingin which a high school dropout gets no respect til one day he tells a neighbor that he will read books in one summer. O reencontro entre dois velhos amigos By the final story the expression of the Holocaust gets cut off. Nonetheless, comic misfortunes dog his protagonists’ collective heels. Finkle represents the force of law, while Salzman stands for the power of flesh, but it soon becomes clear that Salzman, for all his vulgarisms, betrays a “depth of sadness” that Finkle uses as a convenient mirror for his own.


After Salzman convinces him to meet Lily Hirschorn, Finkle realizes his life is truly empty and lacking the passion to love God or humanity. He writes very well indeed. On some level this is probably fine — we have to be selective about what we process in the art we absorb, or else we would go insane trying and failing to understand everything. Winner of the National Book Award for Fiction Bernard Malamud’s first book of short stories, The Magic Barrelhas been recognized as a classic from the time it was published in The baker is not the only woman whose situation Malamud paints with compassion.

Mostly set a decade or so after the war among Jewish immigrants in the US, with several forays into Italy and sometimes involving other ethnic communi Stories told in such a clear, masterful style that it almost hurts about people whose self-image is disturbed and expectations deceived by an intervention of a sometimes mystical factor, a spiritual contingency, as it were, following a long ruinous chain of mundane contingencies that brought them to where they stand in the beginning of their story.

Como uma pequena mentira pode impedir a felicidade But I sought out the Malamud story. Malamud is malxmud author who plays those shimmeringly vivid adverbs and images like aces at just the right moment and here he gives us burnt loaves: One evening in the fall, George ran out of his house to the library, where he hadn’t been in years. To pay for a tombstone or support barrdl store.

In pencil on the title page was the exact date the book officially entered the city collection: