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May 06, 1977 - Image 6

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1977-05-06

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

6 Friday, May 6, 1977

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

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Yiddish on the Master's Level at Jewish Theological Seminary

NEW YORK—The Yidd-
ish book is coming down
from "Bode" and
"Zeyde's" closet for a dus-
ting off in the classroom
where it will be taught to
master's degree candidates
in North America's first
graduate program 'in Yidd-
ish literature.
The program, announced
last week by The Jewish
Theological Seminary of
America in New .York City,
will extend from chivalric-
medieval tales to modern
American poetry with em-
phasis on Sholem Aleichem,
Y.L. Peretz and other
major turn-of-the-century
writers. Its start in Septem-
ber 1978 is expected to be a
landmark in the current
Yiddish cultural revival.
David Roskies, the young
assistant professor in Jew-
ish literature who designed
the program, promises at
the very least an attempt
"to rescue Yiddish liter-
ature from its popularizers,
sentimentalists and bad
translators, and to reestabl-
ish its place in the mainst-
ream of Jewish cultural ex-
pression."
At the Seminary, Yiddish
literature was *taught only
in Hebrew translation until
Dr. Roskies' arrival last
year from Israel where he
taught in a Brandeis Univer-
sity program. Ironically,
while he anticipates many
applicants will need to
learn Yiddish at other in-
stitutions before they can
start, Dr. Roskies reports
that "student inverest
never has been stronger."
Yiddish, Roskies ex-
plains, is -the most immedi-
ate and significant key to
the past available to Jews
of our generation. The
Holocaust, Jewish labor

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Without people, Glassman Olds would be
just another vacant lot. And we'd be watching
weeds grow instead of a business.
Which is why we try to treat our
customers well. We want you to buy your
ears from us. And we know we have to make
it worth your while. Or else.
People come first at Glassman Olds.
They have to. Or, very simply, there'd be
no Glassman Olds.

WHERE PEOPLE STILL COME FIRST

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movement, folklore and
folk life can not be studied
without a knowledge of
Yiddish," he says flatly. "It
presenta a part of Jewish
life that doesn't come
through in sacred texts or
official histories."
In America, the tradition-
al academic approach to

University; and Dr. Ros-
kies expects many of the
Seminary's graduate stu-
dents will learn their Yidd-
ish at Columbia or in the
Max Weinreich Center of
YIVO, also in Manhattan.
However, neither of , these
programs offers degrees in
Yiddish literature.

Yiddish has been as a step-
child of the German lan-
guage program, a linguistic
specialty or comparative lit:
erature in translation. For
the past 10 years, , the Uriel
Weinreich Summer Pro-
gram in Yiddish Language,
Literature and Culture has
been growing at Columbia

Post Office t o Restore Shalm Murals

NEW • YORK—The U.S.
Postal Service will restore
a set of 13 massive wall
murals by Ben- Shahn, res-
cuing them from the plans
of government architects,
according to Fred Ferretti
of the New York Times.
The murals, a set of tem-
peraLon-plaster frescoes,
which taken together make
up a Depression Era-vista
of American agritulture
and industry, were begun
on the walls of the General
Post Office in 1938 by the
late artist and his wife, Ber-
narda Bryson, and com-
pleted the following year.
In 1970 and 1971, the
murals were restored at a
cost of $9,000 by an artist
named Hiram Hoelzer.
But in ,a more recent re-
furbishment of the post of-
fice—a 1935 landmark build-
ing on the Grand Concourse
at ,149th Street—two tele-
phone booths and two bulle-
tin boards planned by the
Federal architects respon-
sible for the job were at-
tached to the fout walls and
overlapped the murals.
According to the post of-
fice's administrative coor-
dinator, Iris Murray, the
Government architects
"didn't even make a visit
here" before deciding what
size the bulletin boards and
phone books were to be.
The artist had left some

Custothers Angry

Over El Al Strike

TEL AVIV (JTA)-7A
strike by maintenance
crews grounded El Al and a
near riot occurred at Ben-
Gurion Airport Monday
when hundreds of passen-
gers, unaware of the strike,
found that their flights had
been cancelled.
The strike stemmed from
a demand by maintenance
crews that the airline ease
their workload by hiring
more maintenance workers.
El Al said it could not possi-
bly afford that because it
had a poor year financially
and barely escaped losses.
Meanwhile, the 23-day
strike by licenSed merchant
marine officers ended over
the weekend. It had cost Is-
rael's shipping companies__
an estimated IL 50 Million.
The officers returned to,
their duties just as the gov-
ernment was about to issue
back-to-work orders. They
agreed to refer their dis-
pute to a committee of ex;
perts which includes legal
representatives of the union
and shipping companies.

but not for long, according
to Murray, who represents
the Bronx Postmaster,
Frank J. Viola.
"The telephone company
has already told us they're
going to take the booths off
the walls and install free-
standing central boot
she said. The dispositio
the bulletin boards has not
yet been determined.
What As more, she says,
once the booths are remov-
ed, an artist will be hired to
paint an addition to Shahn's
work on the two walls in
question. The addition
would fill a white space left
by Shahn in the original
murals and extend the exist-
ing images.

BEN SHAHN
space for the then-existing
booths and boards in 1938,
but the new attachments ob-
scured small portions of
four sections of the mural
depicting scenes of a steel
mill, a city of the future, a
working reaper and a tex-
tile mill.
"My idea, - Shahn once
said of the project—com-
missioned by the Section of
Fine Arts of the Treasury
Department's Public Build-
ings Administration—"was
to show the people of the
Bronx something about
America outside New
York."
Portions of the painter's
message are now behind
the new wall attachments,



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