The Living on the Dead
The Living on the Dead is the history of a book that has not been written. Its central theme is the debt of the living to the dead, and in particular the effects on the heirs of Israel of their new and dearly bought nationality.
Jonas is a writer, on trial for breach of contract. Commissioned to write the biography of a national hero, Davidov, he has after eighteen months and thousands of pounds of payment produced not a word. Despite the mountains of research and testimonies, he is oppressed and even rebuked by his subject's sanctity... even when he perceives that the idol's feet are of clay. He simply cannot write the book of the legend of Davidov.