The novelist, short story writer and essayist Cynthia Ozick's best known piece of writing is called The Shawl, a brutal, phantasmal story of a woman and two children marching to a Nazi concentration camp. The Holocaust and Jewish identity are recurring topics in Ozick's fiction and criticism. Growing up in the Bronx, she was called Christ-killer, and humiliated for not singing Christmas carols at school.
Now 88, her 7th volume of criticism, Critics, Monsters, Fanatics, And Other Literary Essays, was published recently, in July 2016. Ozick's last public reading was 6 years ago, but, happily, we got her on the phone from her home in Westchester County, New York.
Cynthia gives Norman Mailer a piece of her mind (at 1:03:20):