Today is a special day for Schlemiel Theory! One year ago today, I started this blog as a part of an academic project (and to some extent, a personal project). The goal of my project was to provide an important academic and public resource for the study of the Jewish comic character otherwise known as the schlemiel. Moreover, this project would serve as the basis for articles on the character and my book on the schlemiel, which is a work-in-progress.
As of today, I can happily say that this blog has accomplished all of these goals. It has reached a wide audience and many of my blog entries have been widely circulated and cited. In the last year, schlemiel theory has received over 22,000 views/unique hits and has nearly 2000 followers who receive my blog entries on their email every week. Most importantly, schlemiel theory has become the best academic resource on the schlemiel on the web.
I have blogged on a variety of topics ranging from the schlemiel as prophet and the schlemiel and the messianic to Sholem Aleichem’s schlemiels and Slavoj Zizek’s reading of kyncism and cynicism. And the work I have done on the schlemiel touches on such scholars, writers, poets, and comedians as: Walter Benjamin, Gershom Scholem, Irving Howe, Emmanuel Levinas, Leo Strauss, Leo Shestov, Hannah Arendt, Ernst Bloch, Sidra DeKoven Ezrahi, Robert Walser, I.B. Singer, Bernard Malamud, Philip Roth, Gary Shteyngart, Andy Kaufmann, Jerry Lewis, Woody Allen, Howard Stern, Louis CK, Larry David, and Seth Rogen (amongst many others).
In the age of social networking, this blog, because of all its unique hits, will come up first when people research the schlemiel in general or this or that schlemiel in particular (Seth Rogen, Woody Allen, etc). It is the portal to the schlemiel and its unique brand of comedy. More importantly, my work preserves the work of such scholars as Ruth Wisse and Sanford Pinsker – the only scholars to have ever dedicated books to the schlemiel – and carries on the tradition of schlemiel theory for a new age.
I want to thank everyone for your support and encouragement. And I look forward to writing more and more on the schlemiel. To be sure, given all the burgeoning expansion of schlemiels today and the fact that so many have yet to receive their due, this blog has its work cut out for it.
Thanks for your support!
I’ll see you all at the circus!