Talking Ben Hecht

Film · Ideas & Opinion · Reviews

One of the greatest American screenwriters, Ben Hecht was a renaissance man of dazzling sorts—reporter, novelist, playwright, crusader for the imperiled Jews of Hitler’s Europe, and propagandist for pre-1948 Palestine’s Jewish terrorist underground. He was also a balletomane and auteur (wrote, produced and directed) the ballet-noir, Specter of the Rose (1946). Whatever the outrage he stirred, this self-declared “child of the century” came to embody much that defined America—and especially Jewish America—in his time.

Award-winning essayist and biographer Adina Hoffman will discuss her new book about Hecht, which The New Yorker, calls “superb” and Booklist describes as “electrifying.”

Ben Hecht: Fighting Words, Moving Pictures | Alan D. Leve Center for Jewish Studies | UCLA Faculty Center | Thursday Oct 31, 4 pm

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