Yiddish Book Center

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A Focus On Yiddish Women Writers

Women in Translation month was launched in 2014 by Jewish Israeli scholar Meytal Radzinski, who noticed that only about 30% of all translated works were authored by women. This certainly holds true for Yiddish literature, whose most well-known figures are predominantly male. Yet, as evidenced in our collections, there are indeed many Yiddish writers who are women–writers of poetry, short stories, essays, literary and cultural criticism, autobiography, and more. These women, while often lesser-known, were brilliant and daring, complicated and compassionate, exuberant and quiet, and endlessly fascinating. The topics that they chose to write about were equally wide-ranging, from domesticity, to desire and the body, to politics, the environment, and the ravages of war. We’ve selected a few items from our collections that showcase this indominable group of writers.


Handpicked Josh Lambert

The Yiddish Book Center's Academic Director, Josh Lambert is the author of Unclean Lips: Obscenity, Jews, and American Culture, and American Jewish Fiction: A JPS Guide. His reviews and essays have appeared in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Haaretz, the Forward, the Globe and Mail, and many academic journals. Josh is constantly searching our collections for material for his teaching and writing. Here are some of his latest finds.