In this episode, Israeli poet Tahel Frosh talks to us about her debut poetry collection Betsa (Avarice, 2014), financial crisis, and the value of culture.
We revisit the summer of 2011, when a series of protests spread across Israel sparked by rising housing costs, the increased cost of living, and a widening gap between rich and poor. During this period, poets like Frosh were notably active, organizing public readings and distributing their poetry online and for free.
A few years later, Frosh published Avarice to wide acclaim. In Hebrew, the word for “avarice" is "betsa," which derives from the root meaning “to break off, cut and tear apart.” Frosh's visit to Oxford in February presented an opportunity to revisit the making of Avarice and the questions that it raises about the value of poetry and the complicated role that money plays in our lives.
This episode features the poem “Dark Country" from Frosh’s Avarice, published in 2014 by Mossad Bialik. Staying Alive is an original podcast series produced and hosted by me, Adriana Jacobs, with editing by Danielle Beeber and Danny Cox, and music by The Zombie Dandies. Support for this podcast comes from the John Fell Fund. For more information about this episode, including materials that didn’t make it into the final cut, visit the podcast website www.stayingalive.show.