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The Giant and The Dwarf - A Book Review

The Giant and The Dwarf

By Dov Yanai

Orion Publishing House. 2014.

57 pages. NIS 40.

Translation and editing: Nurit Yehudai and Miriam Shachak

Drawings: Iina Katzav

Reviewed by Judy Shapiro

Once upon a time there lived a giant and a dwarf…

Many fairy tales begin this way. But this extraordinary story is no fairy tale. It is a piercing autobiography of a brother and sister. He is a giant and she is a dwarf.

The giant was not a special-looking boy, but when he walked near his sister, a real dwarf, he felt very much like a giant.To make his sister enjoy her school trips and hikes, he hoisted her on his shoulders, taking her everywhere, affording her the perspective of tall people. As he and the dwarf grew older, the burden of his sister on his shoulders grew heavier. He discovered that he could no longer take her off - nor did she want to get off – even when others told him he was carrying noone. She was on his shoulders even when he married and had children of his own.

The giant went on a journey to find someone who could help him ease the burden of his sister from his shoulders. He liked being a giant, but wondered if he could remain one without a dwarf; if there were indeed giants in this world without dwarfs. Only through a wrenching process of self-awareness and painful understanding was he able to find space within himself for both of them.

Posing as a short, sweet children's tale, it succeeds as an emotionally captivating story that is also absorbing and profound. It can be appreciated by adults, teenagers and professional therapists. The language is simple and lyrical, yet deep and meaningful. The narrative moves simultaneously through fantasy and reality, pulling the reader deeper into the conflicting emotions that burden the human soul.

Although this story is an autobiography, it is also an ode and tribute to a unique and loving relationship between two siblings. For us, the readers, it can also be a journey toward self-empowerment, connecting us to the giant and the dwarf within ourselves.

The book can be ordered through This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or GENESIS 09 951 9512.

Dr. Dov Yanai is a world-renowned management consultant and expert in the human side of management and human potential development.

 

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Saturday, 24 October 2020

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