Anita Diamant was born on 27th June 1951 in Brooklyn, New York, where she spent most of her childhood. The author of twelve books is both a fictional and non fictional writer. Upon reaching the age of 12 her family moved to Denver, Colorado. Anita earned a bachelor’s degree in comparative literature from Washington University in St.Louis. She later pursued and earned her masters in American Literature from Binghamton University in New York. Anita is married and has one daughter, they live in Newton, Massachusetts. She is the founding president of Mayyim Hyyim, a mikveh which is said to be a community based ritual bath.
Anita’s career began as a freelance journalist. In 1975 she moved to Boston and began writing for magazines, local newspapers including the Boston magazine, Boston phoenix and Boston Globe. She later branched out to regional and national media including; Yankee, Parents, Self and Parenting. Her stories and columns covered a wide range of topics such as pet ownership,profiles of prominent people, food, politics, media ethics and pop culture.
Anita Diamant is predominantly famous for her great writing of the book The Red Tent. The book is a first person narrative that describes the life of a minor character Dinah, in the Bible. Anita broadens the life of the only daughter of Jacob and Leah. The book title describes a tent, which according to the ancient laws women seek refuge in when they begin menstruating or giving birth. It is from this tent that women from the tribe of Jacob must go to find encouragement and moral support from their aunties, mothers and sisters.The book includes a number of characters who do not appear in biblical accounts such as Laban’s second wife and her reckless sons. The Red Tent describes Genesis 34, where Dinah was ‘defiled’ by a prince of Shechem, she unfortunately falls pregnant. However, the prince is described to be passionately in love with the girl, Dinah is also head over heels and is willing to get married to the prince. The prince offers bride price that is fit enough for royalty, but Dinah’s brother are still unhappy by what happened to their sister.
Her brother’s Levi and Simon treacherously trick the shechemites into getting circumcised so that they can be forgiven and reunited with the tribe of Jacob. Soon after the shechemites are circumcised and are overwhelmed by pain, Dinah’s brothers murder them and return home with their sister.Horrified and stricken by grief, Dinah curses her brothers and runs away from home to Egypt. She gives birth in Egypt and returns home to her estranged family where she learns that her living brothers and her father have forgotten her, but her memories still live on with the other women from the tribe of Jacob.The book gained popularity and became a New York bestseller courtesy of book clubs, reader recommendations and independent bookstore support. The book celebrates women together with the mysteries that accompany their life cycles.
In 2001 The Red Tent was honored by the independent booksellers alliance and received an award of the best book sense fiction of the year. The book has been published in more than 25 countries and in 20 different languages. The countries include Korea, Germany, France, Australia, England and Japan among others. The book was in 2014 adopted by Lifetime TV and was made into a two part miniseries with each series going for four hours.Anita writes another remember able and noteworthy novel that describes family ties, friendships, feminism and values of a young woman growing up in the early twentieth century in Boston. The book title goes by the name Boston Girl .The Boston Girl comes off as a transcript of a tape recorded monologue by Addie who is then eighty five years old. The book describes Addie Baum as a young Jewish girl who grew up in the 1900 in Boston.
Addie’s parents are unaware of the effects that America will have on their three daughters. Growing up in the Northern end in a neighborhood swarming with people from different cultural backgrounds, Addie is exposed to new ways of life. Her curiosity and intelligence take her to a world that astonishes her conservative parents. Addie is introduced to the life of celebrities, short skirts and becomes interested in the new opportunities available for women. She becomes eager to complete her high school education, join the college of her dreams, get a career and fall in love with the man of her dreams.
When asked by her twenty-one year old granddaughter how she become the woman she is today, eighty five year old Addie then narrates to her. She describes how in 1915 she was able to find her voice and she made friends who helped her in shaping her life. With a wicked sense of humor, she talks about her disastrous love affair, her library group with her friends and her small apartment that she shared with her mother and two sisters. She recalls her mother criticizing her for ruining her eyes while she was reading and that no one could marry a girl with a squint. She of course finds a way of running away from her parents and their suffocating expectations. She joins a reading club of Jewish girls, there she meets a better class of people with better games, class and leisure activities.
Although Addie claims to have forgotten more than she would like to admit, but without hesitation or repetition she recalls events from the 1920 with a lot of details. She narrates how her friends and family encountered sexual bullying, child labor ordeals and crushing losses. She experiences golden friendships, new life and gets lucky as she finds key benefactors who help her with her schooling and finding a job Addie recalls staying at Rock-port lodge located in a seaside town, north of Boston, where she makes friends and together they go through the period of great depression, influenza epidemic and World War 1. The story portrays a complicated life of an American woman and takes an interesting look at a generation of women trying to find a place in the changing world.
Books in order of publication:
|The Red Tent||(1997)|
|The Last Days of Dogtown||(2005)|
|Day After Night||(2009)|
|The Boston Girl||(2014)|
|How to Find and Work with a Literary Agent||(1986)|
|The New Jewish Wedding||(1986)|
|The Jewish Baby Book||(1988)|
|What to Name Your Jewish Baby||(1989)|
|Living a Jewish Life||(1991)|
|The New Jewish Babybook||(1993)|
|Bible Baby Names||(1996)|
|Choosing a Jewish Life||(1997)|
|How to Be a Jewish Parent||(2000)|
|Pitching My Tent||(2003)|
|How to Raise a Jewish Child||(2008)|
|Life and Death in the Nursery||(2016)|
|The Jewish Wedding Now||(2017)|