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January 01, 1971 - Image 28

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1971-01-01

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Mark Twain's 'Anti-Semitism' Refuted


By PHILIP stomowrrz
Thus, the record regarding Mark
his parts, no slowing of his ener-
(Copyright 1370, erA, inc.)
gies, no dulling of his alert and Twain stands fully attested to and
Was Mark Twain an anti-Semite aggressive mind. All things are Maxwell Geismai has aided im-
as has been claimed on numerou mortal but the Jew; all other forces mensely in clarifying the Twain-
occasions? Maxwell Geismar, on e pass, but he remains. What is the Clemens
attitude toward the Jews.
of America's most distinguishe d secret of the immortality?"
literary critics and authors, wh 0
exposed the anti-Semitism of Henr V
Try and Stop Me
James, denies it. He makes ref
erence to it in his notable wor k
"Mark Twain: An America
We have it on the authority of says," counseled Goldwyn, then
Prophet" published by Houghto n Barrister Irving Engel that a little- clinched his advice with a parting.
Mifflin Co. and he produces evi publicized but self-indulgent sister "Don't even ignore him!"
o o o
dence to the contrary.
of old J. P. Morgan used to lunch
Geismar often disputes what ha s frequently at Delmonico's deluxe
An old Hollywood couple were
been alluded to as Twain's "lin - restaurant located on Fifth Avenue congratulated for staying married
gering anti-Semitism." The note d at 43rd Street. She complained to 24 years. "We had to," explained
critic and the author of the lates her brother one day that there was the wife grimly. "Neither of us
work on Mark Twain-Samuel Clem no place in the neighborhood where would take our kids!"
ens refers to anti-Semitic trend she could conveniently cash a
O0 •
among American writers and i n check. J. P. Morgan promptly did
relation to the bias which he ha S what any good brother would do QUOTABLE:
Election day can't be far off
exposed in Henry James and i n under the circumstances: he
other authors, Geismar has thi S started the Fifth Avenue Bank to when a candidate recognizes you
to say:
provide her with the desired facil- across the street — and dodges
traffic to come over and shake
"Clemens was accurate and per ity!
o o o
your hand. — Kin Hubbard.
suasive when he attributed the
Leisure time is when your wife
The news isn't ALL bad — de-
fear and hatred of Jews to eco-
nomic causes where, just as in spite the gloom dispensers on late can't find you. — Clint Wiley.
There is nothing more embarras-
modern colonialism, financial gain evening newscasts. A report from
could be linked with moral hypoc- Moscow, for instance, reveals the sing than watching a student do
risy; though he was perhaps over- fact that our old adversary Nikita something you told him was abso-
generbus in attributing to all Jews Khrushchev has taken. up paint- lutely not possible. — Pat Rose.
Every masterpiece was written
the virtues that only some pos- ing as a hobby. This marks an
sessed. He did not really .under. interesting switch; as it's certainly this morning" — Thornton Wilder.
When small men cast large
stand the meaning of the whole better to have dictators ending up
heritage of Jewish culture in the as painters than painters ending up shadows, it is a sure sign the sun
is setting. — Nathaniel Lee.
historical epoch of Judeo-Christian as dictators!
o o o
Men use thought only to conceal
civilization—but he was also open
wrongdoings and speech only
to suggestion and quick to correct
Famed movie producer Sam
his own ignorance. Perhaps, all in Goldwyn, in one of his more be- to conceal their thoughts. — Vol-
all, this particular essay should nign moods, was attempting to
• • •
be regarded as a typical example buck up a director whose ego had
Dorothy Parker, whose sharp
of American thinking about the been bruised by a cruel critic from
Jews, in an area where Clemens the effete East. "Don't pay any tongue and—when she wanted to
had admittedly not done much attention to what that no-good trot it out — irresistible charm
made her famous in the exuberant
thinking for himself; and one
aftermath of World War I—was
should compare Twain's relatively
'advanced' views about the Jews Mimi Benzell, 47, Dies born prematurely in West End,
New Jersey, on August 22, 1893.
with the embedded anti-Semitism Met, Broadway Star
Years later, she was to say that
of Henry James and Edith Whar-
it was the last time she was early
ton in the same period, and of NY Radio Hostess
Willa Cather and Ernest Heming-
for anything.
• • •
way—even of Theodore Dreiser and
. Thomas Wolfe—in a later and sup-
A long-married couple in New
posedly emancipated period.
York had a most unusual experi-
In any study of the vein of anti-
ence the other evening. They stay-
Semitism that has run through the
ed home all alone for dinner! No
American novel ever since the tides
prevues, no charity balls, no pro-
of European immigration began in
test meetings, no little parties for
the 1880s and 1890s — a study
22 close friends—just Papa with a
which would be of particular in-
new book to read and Mama with
terest, and one which hasn't, to
her knitting. After a while, Mama,
my knowledge, yet been done—
who had been fidgeting quite a bit,
Mark Twain would come off not
suggested, "The least you could
too badly. Our only regret should
do is talk to me while I knit." "I
be that this master artist does not
have a much better idea," answer-
come off better; and the protruding
ed Papa. "You knit to me while
edges of Twain's opinions • about
I read!"
• • •
the Jews show, perhaps, how
deeply this strand of prejudice _ is
Cleveland Armory nominates as
woven into our whole cultural
this four-liner
found , in an eighth-grade student's
"In some versions of 'Concern-
ing the Jews,' even Twain's famous
"Hickory dkkory dock,
quip, 'A Jew is also a human be-
The mice ran up the clock.
ing; worse I could say of no man,'
The clock struck one;
is watered down for fear of further
MANHASSET, N.Y.--Mimi Ben- The others escaped with minor
zell, Metropolitan opera and Broad-
The famous essay "Concerning way performer and radio person-
0 1071, by Bennett Cerf.
the Jews" by Mark Twain ap- ality, died here Dec. 23 at age 47.
Distributed by
King Features Syndicate
peared in Harper's in September,
Miss Benzell played Gilda in
1899. The famous Twain comment the Metropolitan Opera's produc-
in that article was:
tion of Verdi's "Rigoletto." She Troops on Bar-Lev Line
"If the statistics are right, the also performed in "La Boheme"
Get a Touch of Home
Jews constitute but one per cent of and "Mignon."
the human-race. It suggests a nebu-
In 1981, Miss.Benzell performed
lous dim puff of star dust lost in In the Broadway play, "Milk and Bar-Lev Line is actually not-
the blaze of the Milky Way. Prop- . Honey,"
line at ail, but a series of mole-
erly the Jew ought hardly to be
heard of; but he is heard of, has
always been heard of., He is as talk program on WNBC in New banks of the canaL
prominent on the planet as any York City. She also served as di.
Everything possible is being
other people, and his commercial rector of the Nassau County Office done to lighten the burden of Is-
importance is extravagantly out of of Performing and Fine Arts.
forces at the front lines.
proportion to the smallness' of his
Miss Benzell was born in Bridge-
bulk. His contributions to the port, Conn., and attended Hunter Music is piped in to the messhalls,

world's list of great names in liter-
ature, science, art, music, finance,
medicine, and abstruse learning are
also way out of proportion to the
weakness of his numbers. He has
made a marvelous fight in this
world in all the ages; and has done
it with his hands tied behind him.
He could be vain of himself and be
excused for it. The Egyptians, the
Babylonians and the Persians rose.
filled the planet with sound and
splendor, then faded to dream.•
stuff and passed away; the Greek
and the Roman followed and made
a vast noise, and they are gone:
other peoples have wrung up and
held their torch high for a time,
but it burned out, and they sit in
twilight now, or have vanished. The
Jew saw them all, beat them all,
and is- now 'what - he always' was,
exhibiting no decadence, no in
firmities of age, no weakening of

College and the Mannes School of
Music, She is survived by her hus-
band. concert manager Walter
Gould, and two children.

Third Reich's Rise Probed
in Guide to Speer Book

NEW YORK—A 21-page study

guide analyzing Albert Speer's "In-
side the Third Reich" has been

prepared by European specialist
Jerry Goodman of the American
Jewish Conanittee to stimulate un-
derstanding by the American pub-
lic of the rise of totalitarianism in
The study guide, based on the
recently published memoirs of Hit-
arts war production chief,. Las-

c usses the origins and nature of
National Socialism.


and there are gas-fueled ranges
in the galleys. Modern plumbing
and toilet facilities are accessible
through a network of bomb-proof
Hot showers are available bare-
ly 10 yards from the front line,
and regulations require that each
soldier shower at least twice a
The daily menu includes at least
one meat meal, and seasonal fresh
fruit is served for dessert.
Outposts are visited at least
once a week by entertainers, who
have performed even under fire,
in a bunker.
There is still no place to go
in. Aft-duty hours, .and_ until _the
Israel soldier goes home on leave,
he is stuck within the perimeter.


28—Friday, January 1, 1971

Mapai Wins Labor Vote; Sapir Succession Seen

TEL AVIV (ZINS) — The Mapai
faction scored a decisive victory
in balloting at the National Con-
ference of Labor, while the other
major factions — Ahdut Avoda
and Rafi — ran a poor second and
According to an unofficial com-
munique from the central elections
committee, the vote was as fol-
lows: Mapai 70 per cent; Ahdut
Avoda 17 per cent; and Rafi 13 per
Political observers view the

election returns as signifying a
decisive endorsement of Mapai,
whose top figure is Finance Min-
ister Pinhas Sapir, now in line for
the premiership of Israel. His lead-
ing rivals are Moshe Dayan and
Yigal Allon.

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