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Josef’s Lair

by Robert Brodey, BA’94

josef lair

"In May 1994, I had an idea for a political thriller about an Israeli archaeologist — the son of Holocaust survivors — who goes on the hunt for war criminals. I decided to write Josef’s Lair as a short story, but it grew so long I transformed it into a full length work of fiction. When it was done, I began to flog it to publishers and agents (2001). I had some interest in the premise, but when it came to the full manuscript, there were some major issues, so I began the long process of rewriting it. When I couldn’t resolve certain story issues, I transformed it into a screenplay, hoping the process would reveal new ways of telling the story and coaxing out character.

"It was a somewhat  complex story, tying in my experiences in Cuba researching the Afro-Cuban religions Santeria and Palo, as well as my time in Guatemala during the long and bloody civil war there. As much as it tackled serious political and historical elements, it also had fantastical aspects, which made for a complicated balancing act. At the heart of Josef’s Lair lay the universal questions: what was the nature of evil and redemption and would we ever learn from the past?" For more information.

This article appeared in the Spring 2015 edition of Alumni Gazette
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