Travels to Yiddishlands: Three Centers of Yiddish Responses to the Holocaust

1024 692 Naya Lekht

In an attempt to classify writing on the Holocaust, the United States Library of Congress first recognized “Holocaust literature” in 1968, even though people wrote of the horrors witnessed during the Second World War well before the late 1960s. But as with any construct imposed on a literary phenomenon, it took at least two generations for its history to acquire shape and meaning (Roskies 157). To date the inception of Holocaust literature proves to be a difficult task mainly because the first studies looked predominantly at post-traumatic, survivor narratives that were available in English. It is only recently that scholars have turned their attention to Yiddish language representations of the Holocaust. This anachronistic impulse seems dreadfully delayed as on the eve of the Holocaust, an estimated eleven million Jews spoke Yiddish.

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Naya Lekht

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