An inspiring story of finding hope in frightening times, of exodus and determination, and of timeless questions shared among generations
“What a journey! Without Return is essential reading for anyone as fascinated as I am by the lost world of Alexandrian Jews, remembered here and evoked in poignant detail.” —Gini Alhadeff, author of The Sun at Midday: Tales of a Mediterranean Family
“Without Return provides an essential addition to the mosaic of experiences surrounding the exile of Jews from Egypt following the Suez Crisis. A family story of challenge and redemption, it is also a profoundly human story that illuminates the valiance and resilience of the human spirit.” —Jean Naggar, author of Sipping from the Nile
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
By Jacques Sardas
An inspiring story about a Sephardic Jew’s life In Egypt during the last years in which Jews, Muslims, and Christians lived peacefully side by side—and the determination that drove his immigration to the United States and his rise to a successful business career
In the early 1950s, a nationalistic fervor swept Egypt and escalated into prejudice and violence against Jews, forcing many to flee. By 1956, following the Suez Crisis, the situation had become so difficult that Jacques Sardas and his family realized that for their safety, they, too, must leave the Egypt they loved. Facing uncertainty but determined to secure a comfortable future, the man who would eventually become president of Goodyear’s worldwide tire division set off for a distant continent with a gut-wrenching stamp on his passport—Moughadra nihaëya bedoun awda: “Departure definitive, without return.” Jacques and others like him—people who were considered “foreign,” or apatrides (stateless), even though they had been born in Egypt—could never see their homeland again. By 1967, the Six-Day War would result in the final exodus of any remaining Jews from Egypt—coexistence just a memory.
Without Return begins in 1930, when Jacques is born in Alexandria, Egypt, the youngest of four children. His parents—whose roots stretch back to Izmir, Turkey, and the Greek island of Crete—followed Jewish traditions but also incorporated aspects of Middle Eastern culture into their daily lives. Jacques’s family was conversant in several languages, including French, Arabic, Hebrew, Greek, and Ladino. Although family ties were strong, money was scarce, and the Sardases were very poor—at times desperately so. Jacques’s father sold fabrics from door to door, and business was unsteady. As a young man, Jacques struggled, often bitter and angry over his lot in life. But he refused to accept that he was destined to live in the same economic caste into which he was born. His determination to break the mold became a driving force throughout his life, as did the inner strength that came from his mother’s belief in him.
When Jacques was ten years old, following his mother’s unexpected death, the family moved to Cairo. After high school, he held a variety of jobs and was a member of the Maccabi basketball team that won the Egyptian national championship in 1956. That same year, Jacques married Esther Pesso, whose family had roots in Greece and Yugoslavia and whose maternal grandparents, aunts, and uncles had all been killed in the Holocaust. Following the wave of anti-Semitism that swept Egypt, most of Jacques’s family fled to Israel. Jacques and Esther opted to try their luck in Brazil, the country that had accepted them as refugees. So before their first anniversary, he and Esther, who was pregnant with their first child, boarded the steamship Achilleus, bound for Genoa, and there boarded the Cabo de Buena Esperanza, bound for the port city of Santos and from there to São Paulo. Shortly after their arrival—with no knowledge of Portuguese or English and housed in a barely habitable refugee camp—Jacques landed a job at a bank and subsequently was hired at Goodyear, where he would remain for the next thirty-three years.
At Goodyear, without benefit of a college education, his determination paid off, and he rose from file clerk to sales manager. He was then transferred to Paris, where he rose from sales director to president of Goodyear France. After his transfer to Akron, Ohio, Jacques ultimately became second in command of the entire corporation. During his tenure there he initiated and spearheaded the development of the Aquatred tire. After leaving Goodyear in 1991, Jacques became CEO of two other manufacturing companies—Sudbury, Inc., based in Cleveland, and Dal-Tile, based in Dallas. Both companies had been teetering on the brink of bankruptcy, but Jacques was able to turn them around so that their employees and shareholders realized financial gains that were once deemed out of reach. Jacques’s story—of an immigrant to these shores, born in poverty, who not only achieved his goals but also positively affected the lives of others—resonates especially strongly today.
Without Return speaks to anyone who has ever felt like an outsider. It testifies eloquently to the common humanity that unites us and offers an evocative journey into a world where people of all colors, races, faiths, and nationalities once lived together in peace. It also reminds us that determination and hard work are the keys to success in any endeavor. Above all, Without Return is an engrossing personal history that encourages readers to discover their own family stories and draw strength from the generations that came before them.
Jacques Sardas lives in Dallas with his wife of sixty years. They enjoy spending time with their four daughters and eight grandchildren. He is donating his proceeds from the sale of Without Return to the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas.
Without Return: Memoirs of an Egyptian Jew 1930–1957
By Jacques Sardas
Softcover * Biography and Autobiography/History
280 pages * $17.95. E-book $9.99
ISBN: 978-0-9980849-0-9 (print)
ISBN: 978-0-9980849-1-6 (e-book)
Publication Date: May 22, 2017
MEDIA CONTACT/REVIEW COPY
Jennifer A. Maguire
Maguire Public Relations, Inc./Your Expert Nation
Katharine Viner, the editor-in-chief of The Guardian, posted a thought-provoking and important essay on The Long Read earlier this week, “How Technology Disrupted the Truth,” in which she ponders the recent Brexit vote, the rise of Donald Trump, our social media filters and what constitutes “news”:
A few days after the [Brexit] vote, Arron Banks, Ukip’s largest donor and the main funder of the Leave.EU campaign, told the Guardian that his side knew all along that facts would not win the day. “It was taking an American-style media approach,” said Banks. “What they said early on was ‘Facts don’t work’, and that’s it. The remain campaign featured fact, fact, fact, fact, fact. It just doesn’t work. You have got to connect with people emotionally. It’s the Trump success.”
Viner sees this as emblematic of a much broader struggle that occurs every day when more people than ever are getting their news from social media:
Now, we are caught in a series of confusing battles between opposing forces: between truth and falsehood, fact and rumour, kindness and cruelty; between the few and the many, the connected and the alienated; between the open platform of the web as its architects envisioned it and the gated enclosures of Facebook and other social networks; between an informed public and a misguided mob.
What is common to these struggles – and what makes their resolution an urgent matter – is that they all involve the diminishing status of truth. This does not mean that there are no truths. It simply means, as this year has made very clear, that we cannot agree on what those truths are, and when there is no consensus about the truth and no way to achieve it, chaos soon follows.
What she describes is not a passing trend. She cites the contention of Emily Bell, the director of the Tow Centre for Digital Journalism at Columbia University, that “Our news ecosystem has changed more dramatically in the past five years than perhaps at any time in the past 500.” And she laments the decision by many journalistic enterprises to go after “junk-food news.”
The cynicism of this approach was expressed most nakedly by Neetzan Zimmerman, formerly employed by Gawker as a specialist in high-traffic viral stories. “Nowadays it’s not important if a story’s real,” he said in 2014. “The only thing that really matters is whether people click on it.” Facts, he suggested, are over; they are a relic from the age of the printing press, when readers had no choice. He continued: “If a person is not sharing a news story, it is, at its core, not news.”
Yet Viner is not without hope. She is merciless in examining the problematic business model of news publishers and is not romantic about the “old days” of news, chronicling many missteps that needed correcting. Yet she concludes:
I believe that a strong journalistic culture is worth fighting for. So is a business model that serves and rewards media organisations that put the search for truth at the heart of everything – building an informed, active public that scrutinises the powerful, not an ill-informed, reactionary gang that attacks the vulnerable. Traditional news values must be embraced and celebrated: reporting, verifying, gathering together eyewitness statements, making a serious attempt to discover what really happened.
This is a #longread worthy of your attention and time.
Twitter now sells the video spot above the fold for 24-hour slots,
Will it change who/how your audience uses Twitter? Just the latest example of why anyone in marketing has to stay informed of the changes in the platforms that matter most to the target audience of their authors and clients.
As Janko Roettgers @jank0 reports in Variety, “It remains to be seen how users will react to the new ad unit. Twitter already faced a major backlash this past weekend after reports surfaced that the company was going to roll out a timeline curated by algorithms soon. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey responded to the reports in a series of tweets, denying some claims and assuring users that they’d always have access to the unfiltered timeline.”
The first video Twitter users will see for a very long 24 hours is…
Please check back for News You Can Use from me and Your Expert Nation!
“Late Night” host Seth Meyers is staking out new ground in late-night TV, injecting novelists and poetry readings into the genre’s usual fare of celebrity stunts and viral hits.
“Late Night With Seth Meyers” has become a haven for writers, particularly novelists, with the host welcoming more than a dozen authors in the past year. Mr. Meyers has interviewed Joshua Ferris and Marlon James as well as seasoned best-sellers like George R.R. Martin and Stephen King.
For years, book publicists found unexpected allies on Comedy Central, as late-night hosts Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert made a point of interviewing authors, injecting humor into serious subjects such as science and economics. But neither embraced fiction, which hasn’t had a TV champion since Oprah Winfrey started her book club and turned dozens of novels into blockbusters.
Are you in NYC? Check out the wonderful food and fashion from Peru at CHELSEA MARKET all week!!
Did I know Peruvian was the new IT food? Of course (not):).
Peruvian Cooking Heats Up Fall Cookbooks
It isn’t easy to sum up Peruvian food. It’s a cuisine known for its strength and variety of flavor combinations, with influences from many different cultures, including Spanish, African, European, and Chinese, giving way to bold, diverse dishes that may be new to many Americans. While Peruvian food may not have been a go-to cuisine in the past, that’s rapidly changing— in June, the restaurant Central in Lima, Peru, run by chef Virgilio Martinez, was named the best restaurant in all of South America, and sits at number four on the list of the world’s 50 best new restaurants. This fall, cookbook publishers are capitalizing on the cuisine’s rising popularity with new titles from Peruvian chefs.
Martinez, who also helps to run two Peruvian restaurants in London, is bringing his recipes to the home cook with Lima: The Cookbook (Mitchell Beazley) alongside Luciana Bianchi, to be released later this year on October 13.
Alison Starling, publisher of the London-based Octopus Publishing Group and acquiring editor forLima, said she was well aware of the fact that Peruvian food was becoming mainstream, which helped her in her decision to publish the book. “I was hearing trend forecasters in supermarkets predicting a sharp growth in sales of typical Peruvian superfood ingredients, as well as a rise in the number of good Peruvian restaurants opening up and proving popular in London,” she said.