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

CNN: World “News” Network?

On Wednesday afternoon, CNN broadcast a report on the difficulties of Palestinians in Khan Yunis as a result of the Israeli security forces closure of the main road linking two halves of the Gaza Strip. A reminder: this closure followed increasing use of the road by Palestinian gunmen to attack Israeli civilians and soldiers, including blowing up Israeli schoolchildren in a clearly marked school bus.

The CNN report showed the difficulties of Gaza residents in visiting medical facilities, seeing relatives, and moving produce. It included moving footage of parents and children traipsing along the dusty side roads. The CNN reporter was Rula Amin, clearly a Palestinian, and clearly sympathetic to their plight.

That’s all right. Reporters are human. But might I suggest that CNN show the suffering on both sides of the conflict? For example, in Gush Etzion, 23 kilometers from Jerusalem, in an area not occupied during the Six Day War, but which has been part of Israel since long before 1948, residents of Alon Shvut are also undergoing great hardship: The expensive bypass tunnel to Jerusalem is constantly being closed by security forces because of shootings by Palestinian gunmen, forcing residents to take alternate routes that are four times as long.

People are leaving work earlier, closing their businesses earlier, to avoid traveling home during the dark. An increasing number of children are in need of psychological help because of fears their parents may not make it home safely; and because they themselves have experienced drive-by shootings by Palestinian gunmen. Alon Shvut has taxed its local residents to gather funding to purchase emergency medical equipment, because they cannot be sure that residents will be able to travel to hospitals during emergencies.

Residents are unable to plan outings to visit children and grandchildren in the center of the country, or feel easily about inviting them out to the Gush. Going to a movie in Jerusalem — a trip that takes 15 minutes with the bypass tunnel– can take hours. The same is true of shopping trips to the city’s malls.

Might I suggest that CNN find an equally sympathetic Israeli, Jewish reporter to interview residents in Alon Shvut as a balance to Rula Amin?

If this was an isolated incident, one would not nit-pick. Unfortunately, it is not. For example, when CNN reported the killing of terrorists in Bethlehem on the road to Jerusalem in a car loaded with explosives, they reported it thus: “Israeli troops killed three Palestinians in Bethlehem, suspected gunmen. 275 Palestinians have been killed so far by Israeli troops.”

No mention of the ongoing Israeli casualites. No mention of the fact that many Palestinians killed were actively attacking Israeli troops and civilians, while the majority of Israelis were non combatants involved in getting to school, home, or to the mall.

In general, might I respectfully ask that CNN stop reporting the Mideast conflict as if they are in South Africa during apartheid and the Palestinians are the blacks, and Mr. Arafat is Nelson Mandela? You have simply got the story wrong. Mr. Arafat is a ruthless dictator with a long history of blood on his hands from murdering schoolchildren and Olympic athletes. He has never been elected by his people; has no one to monitor his finances, including millions of dollars in European and Arab donations to the Palestinian people which he funnels into his own and his cronies pockets. He’s a “leader” who exhibits no interest in helping his people now suffering from unemployment, poverty, and gunfire as a direct result of his policy for violent confrontation. He’s a leader who runs summer camps for little kids in which in lieu of swimming lessons and color wars, he gives campers lessons on how to become holy matyrs by planting bombs and attacking Israeli soldiers with guns…

Please, why not a little investigative reporting on those subjects for a change?

Worst of all, an Israeli employee of CNN (who has to remain anonymous) recently revealed that CNN has given local Palestinians video cameras, cell phones, training, and access numbers and is receiving and using their reports to shape the news.

There are those who, like myself, are losing patience with this kind of blatant propaganda in the guise of reporting. Those that would like to join an active monitoring and protest against CNN can find like-minded souls at Awaken613@aol.com or Boycott-CNN@egroups.com.

Might I suggest, Mr. Turner, and Mr. Easom Jordan, if you are having problems finding a sympathetic Jewish reporter, I’d be happy to pitch in and help out. I can make the trip to Alon Shvut at any time (when the roads are open, and Palestinian gunmen aren’t running amok…).

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