in Howard Jacobson


I would like to begin by acknowledging the invaluable work of my former PhD student, Mattia Ravasi, who hunted down and printed out Jacobson’s uncollected pieces of journalism and many of the reviews of his work, and the ‘Identities’ research group at the University of Reading, who provided the funds for Dr Ravasi’s assistance. As ever, my research was enriched by conversations with many friends and colleagues over the years, particularly Bryan Cheyette, who might have written the first book on Jacobson if I hadn’t got in there first! To other colleagues at Reading I also owe great debts of other kinds: to Peter Stoneley, for his unfailing wisdom, good humour and generosity; to Gail Marshall and Paddy Bullard for their tremendous support during my year as Head of Department; and to Maddi Davies, for making me laugh even in the gloomiest times. I am also grateful, as ever, for the intellectual companionship, personal friendship and professional excellence of Debra Shostak, my co-editor of Philip Roth Studies during the time I was working on this book, and to Catherine Morley and Celeste-Marie Bernier, my American Studies buddies.

My heartfelt thanks go to Dan Lea, the general editor of the series in which this book appears, who supported the project from the outset through to its completion, and to everyone else at Manchester University Press who helped see the book through the production process: Paul Clarke, Christian Lea and Jen Mellor. I am very grateful to Tim Hyde and Cathy Tingle at Sunrise Setting for their meticulous and sensitive attention to the manuscript during the copy-editing process.

I gratefully acknowledge Berghahn Books, on behalf of European Judaism: A Journal for the New Europe, for permission to reproduce parts of ‘Fetishizing the Holocaust: Comedy and Transatlantic Connections in Howard Jacobson’s Kalooki Nights’, Vol. 47, No. 2 (Autumn 2014), pp. 21–29.

Finally, my thanks go, as ever, for their love and support, to my family: my parents, Irène and Jacob; my in-laws, Isabel and Alan; my brother, Jonathan; my children, Joey and Jessica; and my wife, Anne, always my first and best reader.


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