‘Roots’, #21

January-March 2004




The section called “History of Jews of Soviet period” opens the magazine. The first work of the section is the article “State Anti-Semitism” by Alexander N. Yakovlev. The author is a famous politician who played a great part in formation of democracy in Soviet Union and Russia. Alexander N. Yakovlev mentions and analyzes facts of infringing upon Jews rights by Soviet state. The material is completed with the article about Alexander N. Yakovlev. A list of the books issuing under the editorship of A.N. Yakovlev is given.

Zalman-Simha (Steve) Levin from Israel is the author of the next article “Religious Opposition to Soviet Regime”. He tells about Jewish religious groups of Hasids which continued their activity in spite of political persecution by Soviet regime.

The next article of the section is called “Mama’s Siberian”. Nikolay Erdman’s Letters from Tomsk” by Victor Ushkovskiy from Tomsk. The article is about Nikolay Erdman, a Soviet playwright, who was one of the script writers of the famous Soviet comedies “Merry Lads” and “Volga-Volga”. The author writes about Erdman’s exile to Tomsk and his work in the theatre of Tomsk.

The following section “Israel and Us” is opened with the article by Dr. Alek Epshtein from Israel “Past, Present and Future of Russian Jews as a Research Problem”. The author supposes that Russian Jews have a special historical mission therefore this Jewish group should be studied. A review of works which investigate problems of Russian Jews is given.

The article “Jewish Traditions in Modern Jewish Theatre” by Zlata Zaretskaya from Israel describes the image of the Hebrew dramatic theatre which has developed in Israel. The author tells about some plays staged in Israel by the best theatres.

The next section of the magazine is called “Jewish Family”. It consisted of three articles. The first article is “Jewish Parents through the Prism of an Anecdote” by Katherine Kopilkova from Moscow. The author analyzes relationships between members of Jewish families described in anecdotes. The author gives special attention to relationships between children and parents. The article is illustrated with pictures by Lera Kemtitz.

The second article of the section is Roman Trahtenberg’s memoirs called “Grandmother’s Letters”. The author cites three letters written by his grandmother before and during the Great Patriotic War (The Second World War) and the letter written by his older brother Leonid who was lost during that war. L. Trahtenberg tells about the atmosphere of love which was in his family.

The article called “Memorable Lessons of Life” by Mirra Saxonova who lived in Velikiy Novgorod completes the section. The author remembers her life in Jewish family of her aunt in Feodosia. She described the pedagogical talent of Mirra Faybisovich, her cousin.

The section “Jewish Literature” is opened with the article by Alexander Krukov (Moscow) “The Window into the World. Kh. N. Byalik is a translator”. The author tells that Byalik was not only an outstanding Jewish writer but also a translator of Jewish writers (Sholom Aleihem, Ben Ami, Mendele Moiher Sphorim etc.).

The article “Matvey Roizman” which was written by Matvey Geizer from Moscow follows. The author describes some of the aspects of M. Roizman creative activity. M. Roizman was a Jewish poet, writer and films script writer.

The next article written by Sergey Katstov from Samara is called “Song Must Re-sound”. The author submits to the readers some examples of translations of famous Jewish poets made by Tsilia Segal and Basya Volovelskaya from Samara.

The section “Jewish Theme in Russian Literature” is opened by Vera Efremova from Orel. She presents the article “Jew in Russia”. V. Efremova analyzes books “Jews in Russia. Some Remarks on Jewish Matter” written by the famous Russian writer N. Leskov.

The next author is Emmanuel Mendelevich who lived in Orel. His article is called “Maximilian Voloshin and Jewish Culture” and tells about interest of the famous Russian poet M. Voloshin in Jewish culture and problems of Jews in the world and Russia.

The section “Pages of Memoirs” contains the article by Miron Morduhovich from Lipetsk “Zheludok Town”. The author describes way of life in the small town (“shtetl”) before the World War II. 2500 people lived in Zheludok and there were 2000 Jews among them. The author tells about structure of population, customs and national holidays, traditions and everyday life of Jews who lived in Zheludok. The article is illustrated with author’s pictures.

Elena Grib from Moscow opens the next section “Our Readers’ Books and Sites”. Her article is called “Holocaust and Literature”. The author describes her own site www.len-grib.narod.ru where she has collected a bibliography on Holocaust theme.

Vladimir Gleizer from Saratov presents three  chapters of his autobiographical book “Notes of a Drinking Provincial”.

The last section of the magazine is titled “Comments. Reviews. Criticism”. It contains numerous letters of readers to materials published in No 20 of the magazine.

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