Isaac Bashevis Singer's "Gimpel the Fool"

Resource Kit by
Josh Lambert

Module Content



“Gimpel the Fool" (Gimpel tam) is an iconic Yiddish short story, one of the most famous and widely anthologized works by the Nobel Prize laureate Isaac Bashevis Singer. First published in 1945, it was translated into English by Saul Bellow in 1953 and published in Partisan Review, helping to establish Singer’s reputation in America as a major author. Drawing on significant motifs from Jewish folklore and history, the story addresses crucial questions in modern Jewish life, including how to maintain faith in the face of humanity’s evil actions, and how to act in situations of both powerlessness and power. 

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