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Reviews 135 Notes 'Politische Brosamen (Jrankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, 1982), pp. 53-73. 'Interview with James Peck published as the first part of The Chomsky Reader (New York: Pantheon, 1987), pp. 31-2. JOAQUIN MARTINEZ-PIZARRO The Canadian Jewsish OutlookAnthology edited by Henry M. Rosenthal and S. Cathy Berson . Vacouver: New Star Books, 1988. pp. 381. $14.95 (paper). There is only one Canadian Jewish journal on the market, Outlook: Canada's Jewish Progressive Magazine. Here, in gleanings from the magazine's first twenty-five years, one reads articles supporting Israeli peace movements, pieces on Yiddish writers and Uterature, Jewish secularism, feminism, the left, anti-semitism, Canadian society, as weU as poems and short stories related to aU this. Sad to say, Outlook is the only regular source of Yiddish Uterature in translation. Yet when it comes to discussing the poUtical roots of the Outlook, the book faUs disappointingly short. Jewish Communism has been the least analyzed of the Jewish socialist movements, far less than Socialist-Zionism or the Jewish Labor Bund, andthe editors missed a golden opportunity to present the movement's history from an internal perspective. The reluctance of Jewish Communist movement members to write their poitical memoirs, to explain how being a leftist Jew could at one time (especially before 1956) have a great deal to do with the Communist Party is so blatant that it is as though a secret history were involved. Nevertheless, there is enough material here for the creative reader or historian to begin fashioning an impression of Jewish Communism, in a sense to create another anthology out of the 7 pieces given us. In the U.S., only Jewish Currents magazine has a similar history, with its historical relationship to the American Jewish Communist movement. OrganizationaUy, Jewish Currents is close to the Jewish Culture Clubs and the Emma Lazarus Clubs, formerly the Jewish People 's Fraternal Order, whose persecution by McCarthyism is decomented in David Caute's The GreatFear. In Canada, the Outlook is linked to the United Jewish Peoples Order (UJPO). The book contains poetry by Canadian, American, and Soviet Yiddish writers as well as critical pieces on the American sweatshop poets and others. There is an analysis of the portrayal of black people in Yiddish literature and a fascinating interview with Ber Green, former long-time editor of the New York Yiddish poetry journal Zamlungen. Green recalls the early 1930s in Toronto and Montreal, his work as an underground editor of the Canadian Communist Jewish paper, the many Yiddish writers he met and the widespread arrests of Canadian leftists. Los Angeles Yiddish poet Isaac Ronch reviews Arthur Liebman's Jews and the American Left and concludes that "What is conspicuously lacking in this massive work is a consideration of the role of Yiddish Uterature in the radical Yiddish movement." Literature formed an important part of the intensely ideological, activist search by Jewish socialist movements for a socially just world. Their Utopian vision of the future, and the inspiration to organize for it, derived as much from the secular, largely socialist Yiddish Uterature as from Marxist-type ideology. The sense of historic exile found throughout much of Jewish socialism is reflected in the anthology's poem, "This Is Not the Road" by Rajzel Zychlinska: "And where is the road?/ Where is the city?/ The sun is ready to go down/ and I have not yet found/ the spot/ the stone/ on which to lean my head for a night's rest/ and again see the ladder in my dreams/ with the angels/ who stiU deliver me/ from the flame." The majority of highly regarded Canandian Yiddish writers at one time or another pubUshed in the Yiddish Communist press and any historical survey of Canadian Yiddish Uterature would be incomplete without taking Jewish communism into account. Unfortunately, history developed in a completely opposite way from the enlightened direction expected by many of the anthology's authors when they were in their youth in the 1920s. 136 the minnesota review Who, after aU, could have anticipated the genocides of World War II, when socialist revolution was expected in 1920s Germany? And certainly none of the authors expected the Soviet Union to be an...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2157-4189
Print ISSN
0026-5667
Pages
pp. 135-137
Launched on MUSE
2011-07-06
Open Access
No
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