Naomi B. Sokoloff

Director of Modern Hebrew and Israel Studies Program
Professor Naomi Sokoloff

Contact Information

Denny 220F
Office Hours
W 11:00-12:30


Ph.D., Comparative Literature, Princeton, 1980
M.A., Comparative Literature, Princeton, 1979
B.A., Spanish, Swarthmore, 1975
Curriculum Vitae (313.56 KB)

Naomi Sokoloff’s research and teaching focus primarily on Modern Jewish Literature, with special attention to Hebrew. Her book, What We Talk about When We Talk about Hebrew (And What It Means to Americans) celebrates the vitality of Modern Hebrew and addresses the challenges and joys of being a Hebraist in America in the twenty-first century. Co-edited with Nancy E. Berg and published by the University of Washington Press (2018), this volume won a National Jewish Book Award. Sokoloff’s most recent book, also co-edited with Nancy E. Berg, is Since 1948: Israeli Literature in the Making (SUNY Press, 2020). This volume features a dozen essays that explore shifting linguistic, geographical, cultural, and artistic boundaries of Israeli writing. The contributors analyze texts composed in Hebrew, Yiddish, and Arabic, by Jews and non-Jews, by Israelis abroad as well as writers in Israel, by canonical and non-canonical authors.

Sokoloff has published widely on Israeli and American literature, commenting on work by, among others, Diane Ackerman, S.Y. Agnon, Yehuda Amichai, Aharon Appelfeld, Louis Begley, Ch.N. Bialik, Alona Frankel, David Grossman, Primo Levi, Etgar Keret, Jerzy Kosinski, Primo Levi, Savyon Liebrecht, Rutu Modan, Yehoshua November, Cynthia Ozick, Hava Pinhas-Cohen, Gabriel Preil, Haim Plutzik, Henry Roth, Philip Roth, Avraham Shlonsky, and Myra Sklarew. Among the topics discussed in her books and articles: responses to the Holocaust, gender and women’s voices in literature, modern poetry in relation to traditional prayer, representations of childhood in fiction, and children’s literature.

Prof. Sokoloff has been active in establishing the program in Global Literary Studies at UW, and she has often taught a course for the Honors Program called Seattle: Reading and Writing the City.


Selected Research

Courses Taught

Autumn 2024

Autumn 2023

Spring 2023

Autumn 2022

Spring 2022

Winter 2022

Autumn 2021

Winter 2021

Additional Courses


HONORS 345a - Seattle: Reading and Writing the City

Winter 2021

ENGL 312/JEW ST 312C LIT 396 Jewish Literature: Biblical to Modern

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