BORIS SANDLER (b. January 6, 1950)
He was a young Soviet Yiddish writer, born in Belz (Bălți), Moldova. In 1975 he graduated from the Kishinev Conservatory and worked as a violinist in the Moldavian Symphony Orchestra. In 1983 he completed his studies in the Yiddish division of the “Senior Literary Course” at the Maxim Gorky Literature Institute in Moscow. He began publishing stories in Sovetish heymland (Soviet homeland) in Moscow in 1981; he later became a member of the editorial collective of the journal. In 1989 he founded for Moldavian national television a Yiddish program “Af der yidisher gas” (On the Yiddish street) and directed it. He produced two scenarios: “Gib zikh nit unter, yidish” (Don’t surrender, Yiddish) (1991) and “Vu iz mayn heym?” (Where’s my home?) (1992)—on the fate of Bessarabian Jews. From 1990 until he made aliya in 1992, he was editor of the bilingual newspaper Undzer kol (Our voice) in Kishinev. He also wrote stories and novels and was a member of the writers’ association of Moldova and the Soviet Union. In 1986 his first work appeared: Treplekh aroyf tsu a nes, dertseylungen un noveln (Steps to a miracle, stories and novellas) (Moscow: Sovetski pisatel), 259 pp.; in Russian, Stupeni k chudy, povesti, rasskazy (Steps to a Miracle, stories, tales) (Moscow: Sovetskii pisatel’, 1988), 318 pp. In Jerusalem, where he was living, he brought out a children’s magazine in Yiddish entitled Kind-un-keyt (Young and old). He served as the administrator of the Leivick Publishers. From 1998 he was living in New York, and from May 1999 he was editor-in-chief of Forverts (Forward). From 2007 he was editing the journal Di tsukunft (The future) with Gennady Estraikh. His works appeared in: Afn shvel (At the threshold) in Moscow; Yugntruf (Call to youth), Yidishe kultur (Jewish culture), and Forverts in New York; Yerusholaimer almanakh (Jerusalem almanac), Lebns-fragn (Life issues), Letste neyes (Latest news), and Naye tsaytung (New newspaper) in Israel; Di pen (The pen) in Oxford; and in the quarterly Toplpunkt (Colon) in Tel Aviv. His book-length works have been translated into other languages. He is a member of the Yiddish writers and journalists in Israel. He was awarded the Yankev Fikhman Prize in Israel (2002), the Dovid Hofshteyn Prize in Israel (2005), and other prestigious awards for literature. Subsequent writings include: Der alter brunem, dertseylungen, minyaturn, roman (The old well, stories, miniatures, novel) (Tel Aviv: Perets Publ., 1994), 263 pp.; Toyern (Gates), stories (Tel Aviv: Leivick Publ., 1997), 157 pp.; Die grünen Äpfel des Paradieses: Erzählungen und Kurzprosa (Green apples of paradise, stories and short prose pieces) (Berlin: Dodo, 2003), 188 pp.; Ven der golem hot farmakht di oygn, historisher roman (When the golem closed his eyes, a historical novel) (Tel Aviv: Leivick Publ., 2004), 301 pp.; Nisht geshtoygn, night gefloygn (Never happened) (New York, 2007), 76 pp.; Royte shikhelekh far reytshel, tsvey noveles un a dertseylung (Red shoes for Rachel, two novellas and a story) (New York, 2008), 168 pp.; Lamed-vovnikes fun mayn zikorn, roman in tsvey teyln (The thirty-six hidden righteous ones in my memory, a novel in two parts) (New York, 2011), 235 pp.
Source: Birobidzhaner shtern (Birobidzhan) (July 14, 1985); Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 395; Chaim Beider, Leksikon fun yidishe shrayber in ratn-farband (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers in the Soviet Union), ed. Boris Sandler and Gennady Estraikh (New York: Congress for Jewish Culture, Inc., 2011), pp. 256-57.