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My Name is Asher Lev

Chaim Potok

Chapter 11

Chapter 10

Chapter 11, page 2

page 1 of 3
Summary

Asher begins study at the Ladover High School. He is surprised to discover that he has been enrolled in a French class. He questions the registrar about this and is told that the Rebbe explicitly requested that he study French throughout high school.

Asher prays for his parents and for Jacob Kahn on Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. About three weeks later at Simchat Torah, a celebration of the Bible, Asher sees Jacob Kahn at the edge of a crowd among those watching the Ladover dancing in the streets. Asher pulls him into the celebration and they dance together with a Torah scroll.

Asher continues going to Kahn's studio on Sundays. In late October, Kahn has a show opening. Asher notices a sculpture depicted himself and Kahn. Anna marvels at what a success the show has been, but Jacob is unhappy. Jacob is sad that he does not have the resolve to simply stop having shows all together. Anna and Asher share a few words and she tells him that a very prominent family bought the sculpture of the heads of himself and Kahn. Asher feels a bit odd, knowing that his likeness will grace this family's home.

Asher's uncle decides to renovate the attic in order to give him a bigger space in which to live and work. To show his gratitude, Asher paints a portrait of their family for Chanukah. In January, Kahn takes Asher to a Van Gogh exhibit in Philadelphia. A month later, Asher discovers that Kahn had made a sculpture of the two of them dancing with a Torah. Kahn comes to a big Ladover celebration around the end of February. Kahn pulls Asher aside to tell him he will have to go to Europe for a month.

Asher's parents return at the end of March and stay at Uncle Yitzchok's house. There is tension between Asher and Aryeh. Yitzchok tries to talk to Aryeh, but it does no help. Rivkeh asks Asher to move to Vienna with them. He replies that his father will try to take away his art from him.

Kahn and Asher talk about his father's anger with him. Kahn says that he and his father have two different natures. He tells Asher to become a great artist; only in that way will he justify what he is doing to those who are close to him.

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