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Leyb Kvitko and the Night of the Murdered Poets

Prominent Soviet Yiddish poet Leyb Kvitko, an editor of the literary magazine Heymland (Homeland) who became the head of the Yiddish Writers Section at the Soviet Writers Union, was born near Odessa on this date in 1890 (some sources say 1893). Kvitko “was welcomed by the [Jewish] urban literary community as a folk talent when he arrived in Kiev wearing […]

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The Uncivil Servant: Birobidzhan Follies

by Mitchell Abidor Discussed in this essay: Where the Jews Aren’t by Masha Gessen. Nextbooks/Schocken, 2016, 170 pages. WHERE THE JEWS Aren’t, Russia-born Masha Gessen’s recounting of “the sad and absurd story of Birobidzhan, the Soviet Union’s “Jewish Autonomous Region,” is the latest addition to the Jewish Encounters series produced jointly by Schocken and Nextbook. […]

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