Proletpen: America?s Rebel Yiddish Poets

Paperback | February 24, 2012

EditorAmelia Glaser, David Weintraub, Yankl Salant

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This anthology presents a rich but little-known body of American Yiddish poetry from the 1920s to the early 1950s by thirty-nine poets who wrote from the perspective of the proletarian left. Presented on facing pages in Yiddish and English translation, these one hundred poems are organized thematically under such headings as Songs of the Shop, United in Struggle, Matters of the Heart, The Poet on Poetry, and Wars to End All Wars. One section is devoted to verse depicting the struggles of African Americans, including several poems prompted by the infamous Scottsboro trial of nine African American men falsely accused of rape. Home to many of the writers, New York City is the subject of a varied array of poems. The volume includes an extensive introduction by Dovid Katz, a biographical note about each poet, a bibliography, and a timeline of political, social, and literary events that provide context for the poetry.

Winner of the Fenia and Yaakov Leviant Memorial Prize in Yiddish Studies for Outstanding Translation

A Choice Outstanding Academic Title

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From the Publisher

This anthology presents a rich but little-known body of American Yiddish poetry from the 1920s to the early 1950s by thirty-nine poets who wrote from the perspective of the proletarian left. Presented on facing pages in Yiddish and English translation, these one hundred poems are organized thematically under such headings as Songs of t...

Amelia Glaser is assistant professor of literature at the University of California San Diego. David Weintraub is executive director of the Dora Teitelboim Center for Yiddish Culture, whose mission is to revitalize and reenergize the Yiddish language, revealing the rich Yiddish culture and language once so basic to Jewish life.

other books by Amelia Glaser

Format:PaperbackDimensions:428 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.2 inPublished:February 24, 2012Publisher:University Of Wisconsin PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0299208044

ISBN - 13:9780299208042

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Table of Contents

Preface / David Weintraub


Translator's Acknowledgments


A Note on Orthography


Chronology




Introduction: The Days of Proletpen in American Yiddish Poetry / Dovid Katz




Urban Landscape


    New York / Alexander Pomerantz


    My New York Street Sings / Esther Shumyatsher


    from America / Beresh Vaynshteyn


    Shadows / Avrom Viktor


    from "On the Hudson" / Nokhem Vaysman


    Wolves / Y.A. Rontsh


    By the River / Martin Birnbaum


    On the Street Corner / L. Mattes


    Men / Dora Teitelboim




Being a "Greener"


    In our Eyes / Dora Teitelboim


    from "To My Shtel Years" / Yosl Grinshpan


    A Blessing Over Bread / Dovid Seltzer


    Italian Masons / Sarah Barkan


    The Miner's Family / Yosl Grinshpan


    Sacco and Vanzetti / Ber Grin


    Vanzetti's Ghost / Yosl Grinshpan


    Visiting Jesus / Martin Birnbaum


    On Roads / Ber Grin




Songs of the Shop


    My Father the Foundryman / Alexander Pomerantz


    Two Songs of a Blacksmith / Aaron Kurtz


    At the Machine / Kalman Hayzler


    The Machine /Kalman Hayzler


    Figaro / A Shtriker


    Strike / Aaron Rapoport


    The Call / Aaron Kurtz


    Chandeliers / Alexander Pomerantz


    Shir Asheydim Ansher / Yosl Cutler


    from "going Up" / Sam Liptsin




Speaking of Scottsboro


    Negro Song / Sarah Barkan


    Scottsboro / Betsalel Friedmann


    Scottsboro / Y. A. Rontsh


    Done a Good Job / Y. A. Rontsh


    Neckst / Yosl Cutler


    Grand Central by Night / Yosl Grinshpan


    Negro on the Subway / Malka Lee


    Whiteness / Zishe Vaynper


    A Negro Dies / Beresh Vaynshteyn


    Jim the Janitor Is Dead / Dora Teitelboim




Encounters with the Elements


    The Fly / Y. Nokhem


    Houds Howl at the Moon / Y. Nokhem


    Earth Dream / Esther Shumyatsher


    Breath of Spring / Sarah Fel-Yelin


    Winter / Yuri Suhl


    The Hungerdance / Menke Katz


    The Man Who Is Out of Work Talks to His Son about the Sunset / L. Miller


    Ballad of the Night / Y. A. Rontsh


    Rain / Ber Grin


    When the Moon Isn't Shining / L. Miller


    To a Butterfly / Menke Katz




United in Struggle


    Bring Me Your Woes / Sarah Barkan


    Strike of the Coal Miners / A. Prints (Ber Grin)


    In Any Case / Yosl Grinshpan


    The Old Woman / Moyshe Nadir


    My October Song / Yuri Suhl


    Vengeance / Shmuel Kreyter


    Eviction Fight / N. D. Korman


    Rosa Luxemburg / Y. A. Rontsh


    Anna Pauker / Nokhem Vaysman


    We Are the Heirs / Isaac Platner


    Not-a / Yosl Cutler




Matters of the Heart


    Kh'hob dikh lib / Yuri Suhl


    To My Beloved / R. G. Ka


    Triangle / L. Miller


    Threesome / Dora Teitelboim


    Your Arms / Dora Teitelboim


    Sonnet and Duet for Flapper and Poet / Alexander Pomerantz


    Fight and Play / Sarah Kindman


    My Heart / Moyshe Nadir


    My Bas-Sheva / Moyshe Nadir


    A Kiss / Malka Lee


    In Pencil / Moyshe Naidr




The Poet on Poetry


    The Song / L. Tur


    I Have Not Woven My Poems . . . / Sarah Barkan


    Today/ Shifre Vays


    Sergei Yesenin / Yosl Kohn


    Morris Winchevsky / A. Prints (Ber Grin)


    To Mani Leyb / Shifre Vays


    Hands / Chaim Schwartz


    The Brave Coward / Menke Katz


    Out of the Depths / Moyshe Nadir


    Dead Chrysanthemums / Ber Grin




Wars to End All Wars


    Spanish Lullaby / Aaron Kurtz


    Andalusian Landscape / Aaron Kurtz


    No Pasarán / Aaron Kurtz


    War Lullaby / Dora Teitelboim


    Greetings from My Shtetl (A Letter from Poland) / Chaim Plotkin


    My Shtetl on the Dnestr / Ber Grin


    Child, You New Man / Malka Lee


    Toye-Voye / Esther Shumyatsher


    Word / Zishe Vaynper




Matters of Life and Death


    Her Three Unborn Baby Boys / Menke Katz


    Suicide / Menke Katz


    A Third / Moyshe Nadir


    The Man Who Hanged Himself / Martin Birnbaum


    A Man Falls at Work / Ber Grin


    Selfwriting / Moyshe Nadir


    Without God's Blessing / Hershl Miller


    Kaddish / Hershl Miller


    Afterwards / Moyshe Nadir


    Gambling / Dora Teitelboim




The Poets


Bibliography

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