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September 18 , 2009

Obsessive Memories

Remembering My Father Yalek Who Never Told Me about Love


In 1905, the young and handsome Yalek left Baranovka, Russia, for the United States seeking a new way of life. He would work hard and save enough money to bring his family and his new bride, Riva, to America.

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In Obsessive Memories, author Clara R. Maslow tells the history of two close-knit families, raised in the same culture of intellectual Jews in Russia, who immigrated to the United States in the early 1900s. It is a story of a time of new political thinking and the flight of young families in Eastern Europe seeking to live in a democracy, away from the old czarist regimes, monarchies, and other forms of repressive governments.

With photos included, this memoir shares what it was like growing up as part of a Russian family in Trenton, New Jersey. It focuses on Maslow’s father, Yalek, an intelligent man with exceptional talents in creative arts, architectural drawing, and construction. Obsessive Memories also explores Maslow’s relationship with her father and seeks to find meaning in why he was unable to outwardly express his love for her or her family.

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