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.

Subscribe to Naomi's Blog

Enter your email address to subscribe to Naomi's blog.

Naomi's 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 - is a chilling tale of the paths that so easily lead us astray, and the darkness within us all. “שטן
Click the book’s cover to learn more.

Watch Valérie Abécasis' interview with Naomi on French Channel 24's Culture program. The interview (in French) begins at the 4:00 minute mark.

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.

Nic Nie MówMay 2017 – The Polish translation of Devil in Jerusalem is published as Nic Nie Mów.

April 2017 – Naomi speaks about her books at the Ivan M. Stettenham Library at the Streicker Centre in New York City.

March 2017 – Naomi tours the Paris region to speak about her new book Les Soeurs Weiss, the French translation of The Sisters Weiss.

January 2017 – Naomi is interviewed by Valérie Abécasis on French Channel 24‘s Culture program. The interview (in French) begins at the 4:00 minute mark.

“LesDecember 2016Les Soeurs Weiss, the French translation of The Sisters Weiss, is published.

October 2016The Devil in Jerusalem is published in paperback.

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 Sarah 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.


The “Gimme” Patriot: Ask Only What Your Country Can Do For You

I started thinking the other day why this election is so important to me, and why Obama’s candidacy touches me so deeply. It is not just about Israel. It is about America, the wonderful country in which I was born and educated, which is the leader, and last bastion of freedom in a world that is too confused to stand up against the forces joined against human freedom.

Yes, I firmly believe that from the very beginning of his career, Barack Obama has been supported and aligned with forces that are anti-Israel and anti-Semitic. Yes, I believe that he has surrounded himself with anti-Israel advisors. If these facts have anything to do with his Muslim father and step-father, or his early education in a Muslim school in Indonesia, I don’t know, and frankly I couldn’t care less. There are plenty of anti-Semites with Jewish fathers who grew up in Israel. So his family background or ethnicity doesn’t matter to me.

If I really thought- despite this- Obama was a good choice for America, I wouldn’t hesitate to say so. Because having a strong, freedom-loving leader that is committed to American values as head of the free world , helping America to stand fast against its haters, is more important than anything else.

And no, there is no conflict of interest with my concern for Israel. Because there is no way a person like that could be against the struggling little democracy in the Middle East I live in.

What concerns me is that Senator Obama has not shown that commitment, that love, that strength. Quite the opposite.

What concerns me is that even though he and his wife have benefited from every opportunity America has to offer in their education and employment, they don’t seem grateful.

I was a little girl when John F. Kennedy ran and won the Presidency. I remember his inauguration speech well. He said: “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” Obama keeps asking his country: What have you done for me and mine, now or ever? He is a “gimme” patriot.

Barack Hussein Obama and his wife belonged to a church filled with Black bigots, which damned America, feeling no gratitude at all for all the progress made in civil rights, and the many, many, many white people (predominantly Jews by the way) who were at the forefront of the civil rights movement and affirmative action, all things that allowed the poor son of a twice divorced white woman to get an education at Columbia and Harvard and to rise quickly and without impediment to one of the most powerful positions in America. I have never heard him express any gratitude for that. What I hear is how the country is so terribly flawed and how he and his friends are going to fix it by taking money from rich white folks.

And even then, he won’t be grateful. His grandparents, who took him in, brought him up, and cared for him, when his divorced mother sent him there, he has called : “white folks.”

Americans have had years of brainwashing to convince them not to be proud of what America stands for. The Obamas are a product of that.

Obama and his wife with your vote would like to take over the last bastion of freedom in the world and change it into “something” they would be proud of. I don’t know what that “something” would be. But it’s the same “something” that CNN, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times and Guardian, would be proud of, and why they are trying so hard to get him elected. These newspapers are ashamed of Israelis who fight back against terror. They blame Israel for Palestinian atrocities. They ignore crimes against Muslim women by Muslim men in the name of multiculturalism. They claim not to understand the word “terrorist” and never use it if they can help it. They think the war in Iraq that freed the world from Saddam Hussein and his missiles was a mistake. They thought the “surge” which has brought victory was a mistake. They think that Islam is a religion of peace. They ignore- or ridicule- real freedom fighters, like Ayaan Hirsin Ali and Brigitte Gabriel. They ignore vast human rights abuses in Muslim countries, and the vast hypocrisy of the U.N. when it comes to human rights, but believe that 9/11 was brought about because America is arrogant, and not sensitive enough to Muslim “concerns.” They think the solution is to open more mosques, and more medrassas run by the Muslim Brotherhood funded by Saudi Arabia. They believe America must take in more illegal immigrants;practice reverse discrimination favoring Blacks and Muslims; and tax to the hilt anyone who works hard and builds up a nest egg in order to subsidize those who don’t work at all.

The Jewish community in America has been a major beneficiary of American values which has allowed it to flourish in freedom without discrimination. They should be more concerned than anyone that the America that has sheltered them is going to be taken over by those who don’t view that as a miraculous and wonderful accomplishment. By those who aren’t grateful. Jews, more than anyone, should be concerned about a leader who is not proud of all America has accomplished, not grateful, and who wants to pick their pockets to achieve unspecified “change.” I fully expect that the part of the American Jewish community who haven’t attended a synagogue for years, don’t know a word of any of the prayers, are all in favor of abortions and intermarriage, and gay marriage, are going to be more afraid of any candidate with ties to Jews for Jesus, than they are of a candidate with ties to Louis Farrakhan and Kadaffi. That was statistically proven in the last election. But this time, it’s not a John Kerry they’ll get. They’ll get exactly what they voted for, even if they haven’t yet figured out it’s the opposite of what they should want for themselves and their children.

Unfortunately, the results of their vote has the power to weaken the dikes guarding our little Middle-Eastern democracy as well, so there will be no place for them to run. If this sounds alarmist, it is. I am alarmed. More than I can say.

Comments are closed.