Herman Wouk (American, 1915-2019) 

Wouk was a dramatist, screenwriter, and award-winning novelist whose works were adapted for Hollywood movies. He published books on both contemporary religion and Judaism. His well-known works were epic war novels published shortly after WWII, including Slattery’s Hurricane and The Caine Mutiny, which would be adapted as a play and film. Several of his other works regarding historical fiction and war were also adapted into classic cinema productions.

Wouk majored in philosophy and comparative literature at Columbia University. He edited The Jester, a humor journal, and published a humor column for The Spectator while a student at Columbia. Wouk started working as a staff writer for radio comedian Fred Allen in 1936. Immediately following Pearl Harbor, he joined the Navy, attended midshipman’s school, and was assigned as a radio officer on the U.S.S. Zane. Wouk’s intellectual life was greatly influenced by his grandfather, a rabbi from Minsk who introduced him to the Talmud when he was a teenager.