Sholem_AschShalom Asch was a Polish novelist and dramatist raised in an observant Jewish family. His controversial works were written primarily in Hebrew and Yiddish, and touched upon a variety of themes including small town Jewish life, homosexuality, and even Christianity. 

Born into a family of ten children in 1880, Asch supplemented his traditional Jewish education with a more liberal course of study.  Leaving Poland in 1908, he settled in the U.S. until 1920 and became a naturalized citizen. Though he received many accolades for his writing, his irreverent style created much controversy and resulted in censorship and criticisms from the Jewish community. 

After spending many years in Poland, France, and Palestine, Asch returned to the U.S. in 1938. Shalom Asch spent his last two years in Tel Aviv and eventually died in London in 1957.