All-College Writing Contest


All-College Writing Contest Winner 2013-14

Document Type


Date of Award

Fall 2013

Author Comments

I chose Jonathan Safran Foer's Everything Is Illuminated for my Jewish American Lit final paper because Foer, though young, is becoming a prominent voice, and I had wanted to read his work for a while. I thought the novel had beautiful writing, but I did not understand why one storyline was so different from the others, specifically why it included magic. In class, we discussed how writers struggle to depict the Holocaust because such genocide seems too horrible for reality. Once I realized that Everything Is Illuminated took this issue to the extreme, I decided to track its effect on Holocaust portrayal.

I enjoy books, movies, and television with a little magic or science fiction in them even though many people write these off as purposeless entertainment. Everything Is Illuminated's magical realism is sophisticated and entrancing, showing that fantastic elements can have value as long as they highlight and explore modern issues from a new prospective.

Faculty Advisor

Benjamin Goluboff



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