Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me

By Harvey Pekar; J. T. Waldman (Illustrator); Charles Pritchett (Contribution by)
(Hill & Wang, Hardcover, 9780809094820, 172pp.)

Publication Date: July 3, 2012

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Harvey Pekar's mother was a Zionist by way of politics. His father was a Zionist by way of faith. Whether Harvey was going to daily Hebrew classes or attending Zionist picnics, he grew up a staunch supporter of the Jewish state. But soon he found himself questioning the very beliefs and ideals of his parents.

In "Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me," the final graphic memoir from the man who defined the genre, Pekar explores what it means to be Jewish and what Israel means to the Jews. Over the course of a single day in his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, Pekar and the illustrator JT Waldman wrestle with the mythologies and realities surrounding the Jewish homeland. Pekar interweaves his increasing disillusionment with the modern state of Israel with a comprehensive history of the Jewish people from biblical times to the present, and the result is a personal and historical odyssey of uncommon power. Plainspoken and empathetic, Pekar had no patience for injustice and prejudice in any form, and though he comes to understand the roots of his parents' unquestioning love for Israel, he arrives at the firm belief that all peoples should be held to the same universal standards of decency, fairness, and democracy.

With an epilogue written by Joyce Brabner, "Not the Israel My Parents Promised Me" is an essential book for fans of Harvey Pekar and anyone interested in the past and future of the Jewish state. It is bound to create important discussions and debates for years to come.

About the Author
Harvey Pekar (1939-2010) was a comic book writer and author of the autobiographical American Splendor series, which was adapted into an Academy Award nominated film. Pekar was also a prolific jazz and book critic.

JT Waldman was born and raised outside of Philadelphia, PA. A proud third-generation inhabitant of the area, he styles himself as an ambassador of the city of brotherly love. As a graduate of the University of Michigan he earned a Bachelor of Arts that prepared him for nothing, but made him suitable for anything. Currently, he is an Artist/Educator working as an independent tutor in his hometown. This book was conceived in Upstate New York, researched and translated in Jerusalem, illustrated in Barcelona, and brought all together in Philadelphia, PA.

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