A Focus On Isaac Bashevis Singer
The latest special issue of Pakn Treger—“Isaac Bashevis Singer: Relaunching Our Greatest Storyteller”—includes a range of features, including the discovery in Poland of printing plates that are the only remaining artifact of Singer’s earliest known work; a piece about Singer’s childhood obsession with a series of Yiddish detective novels; an interview with renowned photographer Bruce Davidson, who directed Singer in a little-known art film, Isaac Singer’s Nightmare and Mrs. Pupko’s Beard, based on a short story by the writer, who also stars in the film; as well as a compendium in which contemporary writers write about their favorite Singer story. We've selected a few pieces from the issue.
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Handpicked Ilan Stavans
A frequent collaborator with the Yiddish Book Center, we were delighted when Ilan agreed to share some of his highlights from our collections. Ilan is the Lewis-Sebring Professor Humanities, Latin American, and Latino Culture at Amherst College, an award-winning cultural critic, editor, short-story writer, and radio and TV host.
Shtot fun palatsn: Lider un poemen
This collaboration between poet Yizhak Berliner (1842-1916) and muralist Diego Rivera (1886-1957) is one of the most curious ever to take place in the Yiddish-speaking Americas. Berliner’s impressionistic verses attempt to summarize his early immigrant’s impressions of Mexico City. Rivera’s illustrations are a tour de force of simplicity.
Pinye Katz's Geklibene shrift
Pinye Katz (1882-1959) was a major Yiddish-language critic and thinker in Argentina. These are, astonishingly, his collected works, with an inexhaustible array of themes.
Eliezer Aronowsky's Kubaner lider
Eliezer Aronowsky (1904-1985) is considered “the first popular [Jewish] poet in Cuba.” This first collection was received with enthusiasm. Rosa Perelmuter, in her article “Becoming Cuban in Yiddish: The Poetry of Eliezer Aronowsky” (Splendor, Decline, and Rediscovery of Yiddish in Latin America, edited by Mlena Chinski and Alan Astro (pages 193-224), offers a comprehensive view of his work.