Today is March 3, 2024 ()
A handful of Yiddish authors are well known today: Isaac Bashevis Singer,
Sholem Aleichem, Elie Weisel. However, the vast majority have become obscure
or forgotten outside of small circles. One crucial reason for this is that many
works of Yiddish literature have not been translated into English, and even those
that have been are often out of print. The story is even more challenging for
women writers in Yiddish, who struggled to be taken seriously by editors,
publishers, and their male peers. Most of the Yiddish women writers who gained
prominence during their lives were known only as poets, even if they were also
talented writers of stories, novels, and essays. In recent years a growing number
of talented translators and scholars have turned their attention to translating
stories, novels, essays, memoir, poetry, and plays written by women in Yiddish.
This talk will introduce some of the amazing women writers now available in
English, and the translators and scholars who are giving them their due.