Tillie Olsen z”l

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A couple of weeks ago, I hosted an event at the 92nd Street Y with the writer Alice Mattison. When asked about her favorite writers, Mattison’s short list included Tillie Olsen, the author of Tell Me a Riddle and Silences.

Olsen, the daughter of Russian Jewish immigrants who settled in Nebraska, was also a labor activist and pioneering feminist. She died on Monday at the age of 94.

You can read Olsen’s New York Times obituary, here.

Other resources:

– Tillie Olsen on Wikipedia

– Scott Turow on Tillie Olsen on NPR

Reading list for a class on “The Literature of Poverty, Oppression, Revolution, and the Struggle for Freedom” that Tillie Olsen taught at Amherst College in 1969.

Posted on January 3, 2007

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One thought on “Tillie Olsen z”l

  1. rachel@velveteenrabbi.com

    Alice Mattison is marvelous. I had the pleasure of hearing her read several times when I was in grad school (she taught fiction at the Bennington MFA program; I wasn’t a fiction student, but became a big fan of her work at that point in time) and I would love to hear her read again.

    I’m so sorry to hear about Tillie Olsen. She was a real master — many of her stories have resonated for me through years of my life. May her memory be a blessing.

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