Rebecca Spence

If nothing else, Berkeley writer Rebecca Spence has chosen an irresistible title for her Sunday talk at Afikomen: Portnoy’s Restraint: How Jewish-American Writers Have Learned to Stop Kvetching (and Love Being Jewish)

Spence, who has her MFA from Bennington College and worked as the West Coast correspondent for The Forward, is writing a Jewish-themed novel of her own.

In her talk, she will discuss Jewish-American writers — from Philip Roth to Michael Chabon, from Nicole Krauss to her husband Jonathan Safran Foer — and examine why the new generation extols, rather than skewers, the Jewish story.

The talk takes place at 3:00pm on Sunday May 15 at Afikomen, 3401 Claremont Avenue.

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Frances Dinkelspiel, Berkeleyside and CItyside co-founder, is a journalist and author. Her first book, Towers of Gold: How One Jewish Immigrant Named Isaias Hellman Created California, published in November...