This year Adam Kirsch, 33, has cemented his position as this century’s first pre-eminent Jewish man of letters. A widely admired poet and essayist, his mind is exercised both by Jewish particularity and the broader world of culture. Both are evident in, for example, his biography of Benjamin Disraeli or when reminding readers of the New York Times that Ayn Rand was born Alissa Rosenbaum. He wrote the weekly column “The Reader” on Jewish topics for Nextbook and is regular writer for its reincarnation: Tablet Magazine. When the New York Sun, for which he was the book critic, ceased publishing in September 2008, his writing appeared more frequently in what earlier had been occasional venues: the New Yorker, the New York Review of Books, The New York Times, Slate and The New Republic — where he had been the assistant literary editor while still in his 20s and is now a senior editor.
This makes me want to oy.