Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist, playwright and journalist who has lived in Jerusalem since 1971. Naomi has written for the Jerusalem Post and other publications in Israel and abroad, as well as to her mailing list, about Israel and Jewish issues.


“The
Naomi's just-published tenth novel The Devil in Jerusalem has been chosen by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency as the number one Jewish book of the season.
The story - inspired by true events - begins with an ambulance screaming through Jerusalem’s quiet streets. Inside, a toddler fights for his life, his parents nowhere to be found. With profound shock, an emergency room doctor realizes that the child’s mother, a young American, is already at the hospital sitting at the bedside of yet another child with traumatic injuries, devoutly reciting Psalms and stubbornly refusing to answer any questions. “שטן
The Devil in Jerusalem is a chilling tale of the paths that so easily lead us astray, and the darkness within us all. Click the book’s cover to learn more.

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Naomi has published ten internationally best-selling novels, and is the author of a hit play (Women's Minyan) that has been performed more than 500 times in Israel's National Theatre (Habimah) as well as in the United States and Argentina.
An Orthodox woman, feminist and iconoclast, Naomi is a tireless advocate for women's rights in Israel, waging a relentless campaign against domestic abuse and bias in rabbinical courts, as well as a successful Supreme Court case against gender segregation on Israeli buses.
With her tenth novel, The Devil in Jerusalem, Naomi continues her ground-breaking exploration of women in the ultra-Orthodox Jewish world she began in 1989 with Jephte's Daughter, followed by Sotah and The Sacrifice of Tamar.
Naomi is a sought-after lecturer all over the world. If your group is interested in hosting Naomi, please click here.


November 2015 - The Jewish Telegraphic Agency puts The Devil in Jerusalem at the top of its list of the best Jewish books of the season.
November 2015 - Naomi lectured in Newton (MA), Boca Raton (FL), Miami (FL), St. Louis (MO), New York City, Atlanta (GA), Cherry Hill (NJ) and Santa Fe (NM).
“שטןAugust 2015 - Naomi’s new book, שטן בירושלים, a translation of The Devil in Jerusalem, is published.
Le Dixieme Chant8-19 March 2015 - Naomi toured France and Switzerland, speaking to her readers in Paris, Marseilles, Strasbourg and Geneva about her new French book, Le Dixieme Chant, a translation of The Tenth Song.
12-20 November 2014 - Naomi lectured at the Windsor Writer’s Conference in Windsor, ON as well as in Detroit, Toronto and Winnipeg.
The Sisters Weiss7 October 2014 - Naomi's ninth novel, The Sisters Weiss, was published in paperback. It's the story of two sisters from an ultra-Orthodox family in 1950s Brooklyn who take very different paths, and then find their lives unexpectedly intersecting again forty years later. To order the book from Amazon, click the book cover above.

8-17 August 2014 - Naomi was the scholar-in-residence on Kosherica's Kosher Baltic Cruise aboard the Norwegian Cruise Lines Star. The 9 night cruise visited Copenhagen, Rostock, Tallinn, Helsinki, St. Petersburg and Stockholm.

Salone Internazionale del Libro 8-9 May 2014 - Naomi took part in a panel discussion on women in Israel, together with Fiamma Nirenstein and Elena Loewenthal, at the Salone Internazionale del Libro 2014 in Turin, Italy.

December 2013 - Watch an interview (in French) with Naomi about her struggle against the haredi war on women in Israel.
Watch an interview (in French) with Naomi about Le Serment.


December 2013 - Naomi visited Île-de-France to promote her new book Le serment (the French translation of The Covenant).


Sotah 15 March 2012 - Sotah was published in Italian as L'amora proibito. Read a review (in Italian).

Jephte's Daughter March 2012 - Jephte's Daughter was published in an Italian paperback edition, as Una moglie a Gerusalemme.

Le Fantôme de Dona Gracia Mendes October 2011 - The Ghost of Hannah Mendes was published in French as Le Fantôme de Dona Gracia Mendes. Read a review (in French).

The Tenth Song October 2011 - The Tenth Song was published in paperback.

May 2011 - Four-time Tony nominee Tovah Feldshuh directed a staged reading of Women's Minyan at New York's Westside Theater. The reading was produced by One Circle Productions, in partnership with Safe Horizon.

Watch the reading. Watch an interview with Naomi and Tovah Feldshuh.

Le serment November 2013 - The Covenant was published in French as Le serment.

November 2013 - Watch an interview with Naomi by Sharon Mor of Shaulina Productions about Naomi's new book The Sisters Weiss in Hebrew or in English.

6 November 2013 - Israel's Supreme Court reversed the District Court's decision against Naomi in the Shapiro case and ordered Shapiro to return the money she was awarded. Naomi agreed that the money be donated to charity.
October-November 2013 - Naomi toured the US, visiting twelve US cities and speaking about her new book, The Sisters Weiss.
The Sisters Weiss October 2013 - Naomi's ninth novel, The Sisters Weiss, was published. Read an article about it in the San Diego Jewish World.
Chains Around the Grass August 2013 - Chains Around the Grass was published in an Amazon Kindle edition.
July 2013 - An interview with Naomi about her trips to Spain to research her best-selling The Ghost of Hannah Mendes was featured in Jewish Travel.
December 2012 - Naomi's play Women's Minyan was performed by the West Boca Theatre Company at the Levis JCC in Boca Raton, Florida.
November 2012 - Naomi visited Île-de-France speaking about her books.
5 November 2012 - Naomi spoke at the Cockfosters and North Southgate Synagogue in London, England.

Categories

An Open Letter to Those Preparing the Car Bombs

To: Those Preparing The Car Bombs And Suicide Bombers, And Artillery Shells In Which To Destroy The City Of Jerusalem And Her People

From: A Jerusalemite

I would like you to know the following: Each time you blow yourselves up, or plant a bomb, or injure the innocent who walk the streets of this holiest of cities, you do not convince me to leave.

You convince me that you must leave.

To: Those in the written and broadcast media who distort the truth, and ignore history, who lie and pander to violence, the so-called underdog, the so-called oppressed people.

From: A Jerusalemite

Each time you say “violence broke out,” when a Palestinian blows himself up in an attempt to murder Jews in Jerusalem, or Hadera, or anywhere else in the land of Israel, you don’t convince me to feel guilt. You convince me that you have no conscience. You convince me that just as Mr. Goebbels was finally shown up, so you and your employers will eventually have to pay the price for this sorry chapter in journalism, for the appalling, and really criminal part you played in helping to get people in our country killed, both on the Israeli and the Palestinian side.

For when a paper prints the names of every Palestinian child injured or killed in this conflict by being put in the front line by Yasir Arafat, every Jewish child killed in cold blood by Palestinian subhuman terrorists, you encourage Mr. Arafat to get additional Palestinian children killed for the sake of additional photo ops and spin points; to kill additional Jewish children.

When you dishonor the death of Israelis by comparing the numbers of innocent deaths to the numbers of Palestinian combatants killed during their bomb, grenade and rock-throwing orgies, implying not enough Israeli civilians are dying, you are suggesting we need more deaths to win your sympathetic hearing for our fundamental human rights as citizen of a sovereign, peace-loving nation to live in security.

Each time this happens, you convince me that you’ve abandoned Western democratic values, and have become a cheerleader for third world concepts of human rights, and behavior. You convince me that you’ve abandoned the Geneva Convention on Human Rights, which lists the deliberate murder of non-combatants as a crime against humanity.

You convince me not that you are courageously fighting for the underdog, the oppressed. But that you are partners with the oppressors, working hand in hand to further the goals of the terrorists, he money-heavy powers of corruption and violence all over the world. You convince me that you have nothing to say to me, or to the world, and that you dishonor your profession which should be the basis for democracy and morality; the profession that is supposed to bring the truth to light, allowing civilized people to reach honest conclusions. You convince me that you should be relieved of your press privileges and be thrown out of every civilized country.

To: The British press, which has been about the worst of all,

From: A Jerusalemite:

Britain, you who invented imperialism and white man’s burden, and all other forms of oppression of native peoples; you convince me that you’ve lost all moral grounding, and have reached a new low as a nation and as a world power. You convince me that my Anglophilia is misplaced, my love of English literature, the British countryside, the British theatre, has to be reconciled to the terrible underpinnings of moral decay that allows this kind of overt anti-Semitism.

When you still insist on controlling Ireland, still persist in jailing the “freedom fighters” of the IRA, condemn the car bomb amidst the pubs of Ealing as the work of subhuman terrorists (a bomb that killed no one), but fail to blush when you call Israel a “pariah state,” for defending herself against those exploding car bombs and human bombs in her heartland, you reveal your moral bankruptcy.

When I read this drivel, this is what I think: Before Christianity, before Islam, the Jewish people built the land of Israel. King David, a Jew, built this city. His Jewish son, Solomon built the Temple long before Mohammed was born, long before the Mosque of Al Aksa was built over its ruins. We survived the Greeks, the Romans, the Christian crusades, the Moslems, Turks, and finally the British.

We are not imperialists. We are the native people of this land. We are the true Palestinians. We are the owners of this land, by international law, by moral right, by Biblical promise. Our claim to this land goes deeper, further back, and is on more solid ground than the Americans have to America. Or the British have to Britain. When I read your drivel it makes me remember what Disraeli said on the floor of your Parliament: “When your ancestors were swinging from the trees, mine were priests in the Temple of Solomon.”

To: All good people, whose minds are still uncorrupted by the disease of Jew-hatred now sweeping our world once again in pre-Holocaust ferocity

From: A Jerusalemite

Last Wednesday night, I attended the wedding of my best friend’s son. It was held in a small garden setting across the street from where, only several days earlier, a Palestinian Moslem fanatic had beheaded young men, driven nails into the neck of a young mother, killed parents and their three children, murdered babies, and sent human limbs flying up two stories high. We, religious Jews, inhabitants of Jerusalem, unafraid, unbroken by your savagery, gathered to rejoice over the holy bond of matrimony, the beginning of yet another Jewish family.

The young couple — that at their own initiative — added a new blessing to the traditional Grace After Meals: ” We have eaten and been satisfied. May we not ignore the needs of others, not block our ears to their cry for food. Open our eyes and our hearts, and may we share your gifts in order to help remove hunger and want from the world.”

We shall keep our humanity, and urge the other good people in the world to do the same. This is the truth, the heart of the conflict, the portrait of the combatants. You decide who you believe, and to whom you wish victory.

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