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Yiddish Literature 1864–1939

The most important writer of old Yiddish literature was Elijah Levita (a.k.a. Elye Bokher, 1469–1549), who adapted the Italian version of the chivalric romance Bevis of Hampton into…

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Expressionism

Expressionism was one of the foremost modernist movements to emerge in Europe in the early years of the twentieth-century. It had a profound effect on…

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Dropkin, Celia (1887–1956)

Celia Dropkin, one of the greatest yet lesser-known Yiddish poets, revolutionized modern Yiddish poetry with her pioneering exploration of gender dynamics. Bold erotic motifs in…

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Peretz, Yitskhok Leybush (1835–1917)

Yitskhok Leybush Peretz, or I. L. Peretz (1835–1917), was a Yiddish and Hebrew writer, known for introducing modernist trends into Yiddish literature. Born in the…

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Bergelson, Dovid (1884–1952)

Dovid Bergelson was a major Yiddish prose writer and essayist. He had a lasting impact on Yiddish fiction writing, introducing new narrative techniques such as…

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Di Khalyastre (1922–1924)

Di Khalyastre (also Di Khaliastra, ‘The Gang’ in Yiddish) was a major Yiddish avant-garde movement and literary magazine active in Warsaw between 1922 and 1924.…

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Brenner, Yosef Hayim (1881–1921)

Yosef Hayim Brenner was born in 1881 in Novi Mlini, in the Russian Empire (now Ukraine). Like many Hebrew and Yiddish writers of his generation,…

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Di Yunge

Di yunge is a group of American Symbolist Yiddish writers and critics that achieved prominence during the first two decades of the twentieth century and…

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Margolin, Anna (1887–1952)

Anna Margolin is a Yiddish poet of the first half of the twentieth century, and though she produced only a single volume of poetry, Margolin…

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Sutzkever, Avrom (1913–2010)

Avrom Sutzkever was one of the greatest Yiddish poets of the twentieth century. A true virtuoso of words, he revolutionised and enriched the language of…

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The Introspectivists

The Introspectivists (Inzikhistn), the first group of modernist Yiddish poets in America, were part of the Jewish American Renaissance and flourished in the years following…

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Berlewi, Henryk (1894–1967)

The Polish painter, graphic designer and art critic Henryk Berlewi was one of the outstanding figures of Polish Constructivism and the Yiddish Avant-Garde. As a…

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Heifetz-Tussman, Malka (1893–1987)

Malka Heifetz-Tussman was a twentieth-century American Yiddish poet. She was born in 1896 in the region of Volyn in Ukraine (then part of the Russian…

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Greenberg, Uri Tzvi (1896–1981)

The Hebrew and Yiddish poet Uri Tzvi Greenberg was born in 1896 in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, in a shtetl, or village, called Biały Kamień in…

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Molodowsky, Kadya (1894–1975)

Known as ‘the first lady of Yiddish literature,’ Kadya Molodowsky published continuously between 1927 and 1974. Molodowsky earned renown as a prolific poet, prose writer,…

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An-sky, S. (1863–1920)

Born Shloyme-Zanvl Rappoport near Vitebsk, Belarus, S. An-sky was a Jewish Russian intellectual, political and social activist, journalist, Yiddish ethnographer, poet, writer, and dramatist, whose…

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Howe, Irving (1920–1993)

Irving Howe was an American literary and social critic. Howe was a central figure in the circles of American democratic socialism as well as a…

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Singer, Isaac Bashevis (1904–1991)

Isaac Bashevis Singer was born in Leoncin, Poland, where his father was a Hasidic rabbi. He grew up between 1908–1917 in Warsaw and from 1917–1921…

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Żarnower [Żarnowerówna], Teresa (1895–1950)

Teresa Żarnower was a Polish painter, graphic artist, sculptor, and stage/architectural designer. One of the most prominent representatives of Polish Constructivism, Żarnower was also linked…

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The Objectivists

The Objectivist poets were a group of first- and second-generation modernist writers who emerged in the USA during the 1930s. The writers most commonly associated…

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Waddington, Miriam (née Dworkin) (1917–2004)

Canadian poet Miriam Waddington was born in Winnipeg’s Jewish North End neighbourhood in Manitoba, Canada on 23 December 1917. Waddington was honoured with several awards…

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Shelem Yankev Abramovitsh 1835–1917

Above, Shelem Yankev Abramovitsh (1835–1917), commonly known by his literary persona Mendele Moykher-Sforim (Mendele the Book Peddler), is considered to be the founding father of…

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Celan, Paul (1920–1970)

Paul Celan (a pseudonym of Paul Antschel) is one the most distinctive German-language poets of the second half of the twentieth century. Born in 1920…

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Yeshurun, Avot (1904–1992)

Avot Yeshurun was a renowned Hebrew poet who remained split between two cities throughout his life: his childhood village Krasnistav and the city of Tel-Aviv,…

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Zukofsky, Louis (1904–1978)

Louis Zukofsky was an American avant-garde poet active from the 1920s upto the 1970s. Zukofsky’s masterwork long poem, ‘A’ (in company with his many other…