The Dybbuk by S. Ansky

The book is a seminal work in Yiddish literature and folklore, centering around the concept of a dybbuk—a malicious possessing spirit from Jewish mythology. The narrative follows the tragic tale of a young bride in a Polish shtetl who becomes possessed by the restless spirit of her dead lover, who had been wronged by his own father and her father's broken pledge. The possession leads to a dramatic exorcism and a series of events that explore themes of love, betrayal, and the clash between the mystical and the rational, as well as the boundaries of life and death. The story delves into the rich tapestry of Jewish mysticism, community, and tradition, reflecting the cultural and religious tensions of Eastern European Jews before the First World War.

The 4484th greatest book of all time


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Total Points: 93

Since this book was first published in 1914, there is a penalty of 0%. The age adjusted score is 93.0.

This is to prevent newer books from reaching super high on the ranked list of the greatest books of all time. The greatest books should also stand the test of time.