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October 23, 1981 - Image 77

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1981-10-23

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•••••••■•■•111....,....... • .0.1.


Yiddish Lexicon Is a Monumental Work


The last of the eight vol-
umes of the "Biographical
Dictionary of Modern Yid-
dish Literature" has re-
cently been published by
the Congress of Jewish Cul-
ture. It is composed of 808
numbered columns, two per
page, and includes the Yid-
dish authors whose last
names begin with the let-
ters "koof, resh, shin and
Among the individuals
who helped finance the pub-
lication are Detroiters
Moshe and Sarah Friedman
and the late Benjamin
Leikin. The contributing
organizations include the
Yiddish Pen Club of New
York and the Yiddish Thea-
ter Association of Detroit.
According to the volume's
foreword, the "Biographi-
cal Dictionary of Modern
Yiddish Literature" is
a "multi-volume lexicon
which contains biographies,
bibliographies, and evalua-
tions of the men and women
who shaped Yiddish litera-
ture in the preceding two
centuries. Although Yid-
dish literature in its totality
is much older, its most crea-
tive period extended from
the middle of the
19th Century to the pre-

The eight volumes con-
tain more than 7,000
entries. Among those in
the eighth volume are the
names of Detroiters Dr.
Shmarya Kleinman, Ezra
Korman and Wolf

Dr. Kleinman, born in
1892 in Russia, studied
medicine. He came to the
United States in 1923. He
contributed articles on
health and hygiene and var-
ious other topics to Yiddish
periodicals• in Europe and
America. He has been a
resident of Detroit for over
half-a-century where he has
practiced medicine and had
been involved in the labor
and civil rights movements.
He served two terms as
president of the Jewish
Community Council.
Ezra Korman, born in
Kiev in 1888, died in Detroit
in 1959. He came to Detroit
in 1925. Korman was a poet,
anthologist and translator.
His poems titled "Shkie"
("Sunset") are exquisite and
replete with imagery, and
his translation of Sergei
Yessenin's "Lieder un
Poemes" ("Verse and
Poems") reads almost like
the original.
The anthology "Di Yid-
dishe Dickhterins" ("The
Jewish Poetesses"), com-
prising 70 poetesses of the
old and new Jewish litera-
ture "is considered as Kor-
man's most important liter-
ary achievement."

Wolf Snyder, born in
1899 in Russia; studied
philology and history at
the University of Kiev.
He came to the United

States in 1923 where he
taught in Yiddish schools,
including the Yiddish Sem-
inary in New York.
Snyder studied at the
New York City College and
the University of Pennsyl-

vania where he majored in
pedagogy and American
history. In 1933 he received
his master's degree.
Snyder contributed
pedagogic and literary arti-
cles to various Yiddish
journals, authored a syl-
labus on Jewish history,
and since 1976 has served as
co-editor of the literary
quarterly "Undzer Aygn
Vort" ("Our Own Word").
He also wrote ai insightful
essay on Moses Hess.

The lexicon's largest
entry is that of Sholem
Aleichem, 1859-1916. It
consists of 43 columns
and is divided into two
parts: life and literary
creativity; and critique
and research.

Sholem Aleichem is con-
sidered as one of the three
founders of the modern Yid-
dish literature. The other
two were Mendele Mocher
Seforim and I.L. Peretz.
Sholem Aleichem, an
early active Zionist, in
1898, a year after the found-
ing of the World Zionist
Organization, published
three brochures: "Oyf Vos
Badarfen Yuden a Land"
("Why Jews Need a Land");
"Tsu Unzere Shvesters in
Tsion" ("To Our Sisters in
Zion"); and "Der Yiddisher
Congress in Bezel" ("The
Jewish Congress in Basel").
It is generally agreed that
his principal works include
"Menahem Mendl;' "Toyvie
der Milkhiker" (Toyvie the
Dairyman"); and "Motl
Peyse dem Khazns" ("Motl
Peyse the Cantor's Son").

Among the authors
listed in the eighth vol-
ume of the lexicon, two
were martyred on Sta-
lin's orders: Moshe Kul-

bak and Leyb Kvitko.

Kulbak, murdered in
1940, was a novelist, poet
and playwright. His first
novel, "Meshiekh ben Ef-
rayim" ("Messiah Son of
Ephraim"), is imbued with
the spirit of the Kabala.
Many of his other works are
permeated with Jewish
mystic and folklore ele-
ments and are influenced by
Russian symbolism and
West European Ex-
Kvitko, born in 1899, was
a poet and story teller. Well
known are his poetry collec-
tions "Trit" ("The Step")
and "Green Gross" ("Green
Kvitko, moreover, was
noted as a children's poet
and composer of stories for
children. Popular were the
collections "In Wald" ("In
Forest") and "Der Groysser
Knish" ("The Big Knish").
His children's stories were
translated into Russian and
other languages.

In 1939, Kvitko was
awarded "The Order of
the Red Labor Flag." Ten
years later he was ar-
rested and in 1952 exe-
cuted by the NKVD.

The third largest entry in
the lexicon (13 columns) is
that of Shomer, pseudonym
of Nochum Meir
Shaykowitch, 1846-1905.
The second largest is that of
Abraham Reisen (20 col-
Shomer wrote Yiddish
and 15 Hebrew novels, 50
plays and numerous poems
and short stories.
Before long, however,
Jewish scholars began at-
tacking his books as literary
trash; and Sholem
Aleichem, in his pamphlet

Volume Tells of Russian
'Death Beam' Aimed at U.S.

"Death Beam" (Crown) by
Robert Moss is a fast-paced
novel based on research into

within the KBG. While the
Washington intelligence
community debates the is-
sue, time is running out.

and on classified studies of
the Soviet program of beam
weapons development.

Only a few weeks be-
fore the attack, a secret
fraternity of Western
operatives swings into
-action to sabotage the
launch. The fraternity in-
cludes an unorthodox
CIA veteran, a suave
British spy and a pas-
sionately dedicated Is-
raeli agent.
Robert Moss, a columnist

the KBG's efforts to penet-
rate Western secret services

The story, which presents
a chilling account of the new
superweapons, begins with
a senior Soviet military offi-
cer's decision to defect to the
United States. He reports
that hawkish generals in
the Kremlin plan to fire a
killer beam from a space
battle station and inflict a
"technological Pearl Har-
bor" on this country.

At first, the CIA refuses

to believe that the death
beam weapon is a reality. To

do so, they would have to
admit that they had been
duped by their top source

for the London Daily Tele-
graph, is co-author of the
best-selling novel "The
Spike." He has also au-
thored several non-fiction
books and magazine arti-
cles. His work has appeared
in Harper's, Commentary,
National Review and the
New York Times Magazine.

• . •

("Somer's Trial"), claimed
that Shomer's books were
replete with "obscenities

and cynicism." Neverthe-

less, I. Gladstone, the poet
and essayist, referred to
Shomer as the grand-uncle
of Yiddish literature.

The "Biographical Dic-
tionary of Modern Yid-
dish Literature" is a
monumental work and a
gold mine of infOrmation
on Yiddish poets,
novelists, essayists and

The editors deserve to be

congratulated for exercis-
ing painstaking care to the
minutest details of this
project and for producing a
magnificent edition of the
lexicon's concluding vol-

Evangelicals Meet in Israel

3,000 evangelical Chris-
tians gathered in Jerusalem
last week to demonstrate
their support for Israel.
The group, which in-
cluded evangelicals from

the United States, Western
Europe and elsewhere, was
brought to Israel under the

auspices of the Interna-
tional Christian Embassy

in Jerusalem. The embassy
was set up in September of
1980 after 13 countries re-
moved their embassies from

mated $4 million to open a
television station in south-
ern Lebanon.
Members of Rabbi Meir
Kahane's Kach movement
greeted the group by tear-
ing down one of their ban-
ners. A Kach spokesman
claimed that Van Willem
van der Hoe ven, the
Dutchman who heads the
Jerusalem International
Christian Embassy, was a
"devout missionary" who
was trying to convert Jews
to Christianity.

Jerusalem to protest Israeli
legislation proclaiming
Jerusalem as the country's
BB 'Soviet Plea'
"united and indivisible"
Slated for Dec.
Evangelical Christian
backing for Israel has in- Brith Women will sponsor a
creased during the previous "Women's Plea for Soviet
year. U.S. Christian groups Jewry" in some 80 North
have contributed an esti- American cities Dec. 10.

Dead Sea Minerals Turn a Profit


"But the government's
recognition of the min-
eral wealth to be de-
SDOM, ISRAEL — The veloped has prevented
Dead Sea is renowned for its closure. Potash, for
excessive amount of salts, example," says Drori,
which prevent a swimmer "was giving low yields
from sinking. The profitable
due to difficulties of ex-
resources of the Dead Sea traction, but today, with
might also be a big boost in perseverance, we are
keeping the Israeli economy producing three times as
much potash as we did 20
This is the belief of years ago. Sales of
Shlomo Drori, the man re- bromine, which we ex-
sponsible for promoting in- ported mainly as an aid to
dustry in the Dead Sea ba- improve the performance
sin. "Mineral exploitation, of certain oil products,
solar energy and tourism were hard hit by Arab
could - put the Israeli boycotts, but Israeli sci-
economy firmly on its feet," entists have discovered
explains Drori, head of the various other uses for
information department of bromine and today the
Israeli bromine plant is
the Dead Sea Works.
the largest in the world."

Israel Government Press Ser-

"The mineral richness of
the Dead Sea is no new dis-
covery. Development is
another story. Industry has
been deterred by previous
failures and for years, the
Dead Sea Works, a
government-owned com-
pany extracting minerals,

has suffered big losses.

Dead Sea potash, which
netted Israel $3 million in
1978 and $25 million in
1979, will soon be a leader
in the world market. A third
potash plant in the Dead
Sea area, using a unique Is-
raeli method of processing

based on solar energy, was

inaugurated in July 1981,
making the potash works
one of the most profitable in
the world.
Scientists report that
there is enough potash and
bromine in Israel to last
thousands of years. This
situation has important im-
plications for the hungry

"Third World," considering
the usefulness of potash as a

fertilizer and new ways that
have been found of using

bromine in the production of
more effective pesticides
and fumigants.

The Dead Sea contains
equally vast amounts of
magnesium and lithium.
Magnesium is a metal ex-
pected to replace aluminum
in industrial use. It is capa-
ble of resisting tempera-
tures of up to 320 degrees
fahrenheit and it could be
the ideal metal for building
aircraft and rockets if it
were less expensive.
Lithium is considered to
be an element which could
replace uranium in a
number of nuclear proces-

Manual for Holocaust Programs
Is Published by JWB and AAJE


"Holocaust Education in In-
formal Settings," a program
resource manual designed
as a practical guide for de-
veloping Holocaust educa-
tion programs, has been
published by the Jewish
Welfare Board and the
American Association for
Jewish Education.

Jewish education set-
tings such as camps,
youth groups,
synagogues and Jewish
Community Centers,"
Greenberg said.

Detroiter Hugh Green-
berg, chairman of JWB's
Program Services Commit-
tee, said, "The information

Sale of JWV Post Nixed

in the manual is based on a
three - year project made
possible by a grant from the

Moss at Book Fair Nov. 15

Jewish Culture."

Robert Moss, author of
"Death Beam" (Crown) will
be the guest speaker at the
Book Fair 8:30 p.m. Nov. 15.
His appearance will be
co-sponsored by the various
men's clubs of temples and
synagogues in Metropolitan

"The JWB-AAJE pro-
ject developed and tested
creative program models
designed to increase
knowledge about the
Holocaust among Jewish
teenagers. The three-
year project conducted
its study in informal

Moss, a frequent lecturer
at NATO military colleges
and a one-time adviser to
British— Prime Minister
Margaret Thatcher, will
speak on "The Secret Link
Between Third World Ter-
rorism and Soviet Anti-

Friday, October 23, 1981 11

Memorial Foundation for

The five program models

that underwent testing
were: intergenerational
oral history project,
Holocaust program center,

The lengthy controversy
about plans of some mem-

bers of the Kelkey Jewish
War Veterans post in
Philadelphia to sell the post

building to a Christian mis-
sionary group appears to

have been settled.
Harry Rubin, judge advo-
cate of the Kelkey post, sent
a copy of an agreement ter-

minating the sale to the at-
torney representing two

dissident groups of post
members who had filed law-

experimental exercises, use

of the creative and perform-
ing arts and new personal
and communal commem-

orations of the Holocaust.

Copies of the manual are
available each from the
JWB Program Services De-
partment, 15 E. 26th St.,

New York, N.Y.10010.

There is a charge.

suits to stop the transaction.
The reported sale price for
the building was $200,000.
The would-be buyer was the

Messiah Missions As-
semblies of God.

Communes Meet

Representatives of 50 com-

munes in 16 North Ameri-
can and European countries

and Japan were in Israel
last week for the first inter-
national gathering of com-
munes and kibutzim.

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