Sunday 21 June 2015


AVROM GORDON (ca. 1874-ca. 1941)
            He was known by the name Avrom Reztshik.  Born in Vilna to poor parents, he studied in religious primary school and in a Russian public school.  He later became an engraver and supported himself in this way for his entire life.  At age sixteen or seventeen, he was an active contributor to propaganda circles which Jewish pioneers of socialism at the time led among the Jewish workers of Vilna in the Russian language.  Gordon became known as the leader of the “opposition” to the new system of agitation which Arkadi Kremer articulated in his Russian-language pamphlet Ob agitatsii (On agitation) of 1894.  Contrary to the new movement for a broad political agitation in Yiddish, he held that they had to lead the propaganda circles in Russian.  In the 1920s he was still running his propaganda work, as well as he could, in Russian.  Gordon-Rezchik issued the following pamphlets: Di apelatsye tsu vilner arbeter (The appeal to Vilna laborers) (Vilna, 1919); Der groyser krizis in marksizm, sotsyalizm, demokratye un in arbeter-bavegung (The great crisis in Marxism, socialism, democracy and in the labor movement) (Vilna, 1924); In friling fun vilner yidisher arbeter-bavegung (In the spring of the Vilna Jewish labor movement) (Vilna, 1925), 68 pp.  In the last of these pamphlets were his speeches, beginning in 1891, as well as a report on the struggle of the “opposition” in those years.  In 1940 one could still encounter him in Vilna.  He either died or was killed sometime around 1941.

Sources: Yu. Martov, Zapiski sotsial-demokrata (Notes of a social democrat), part 1 (Berlin, 1922), pp. 229-33; Pati Srednicki (Kremer), in Arkadi-bukh (Volume for Arkadi [Kremer]) (Vilna, 1930), pp. 50-54 (also p. 284); Hillel Kats-Blum, on Historishe shriftn fun yivo (Historical writings from YIVO), vol. 3 (Vilna-Paris, 1939), pp. 352-53; John Mill, Pyonern un boyer (Pioneers and builders), part 1 (New York, 1941), pp. 98-102; Leo Bernshteyn, Ershte shprotsungen (First sprouts) (Buenos Aires, 1956), pp. 151-59.
                                                                                                        Yitskhok Kharlash

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