Tuesday 27 October 2015


LEYZER DOMANKEVITSH (October 10, 1899-June 20, 1973)
            He was born in Krushnevits, Poland, into a Hassidic family.  He studied in religious elementary school, yeshiva, and secular subject matter with private tutors.  As a young man, he left for Lodz where he lived until 1931 and there worked as a private teacher of Hebrew.  In 1931 he moved to France where he worked in a variety of trades.  He was active in the Zionist labor movement, primarily in the cultural sphere, a lecturer and a speaker, and a member of the European bureau of the Jewish Culture Congress.  He began writing in Hebrew and published children’s poetry in Haḥaver (The friend) and Haperaḥim (The flowers) in Warsaw (1916).  He later published essays on literary issues in Hatsfira (The siren) in Warsaw (1924).  All through this time, he was also writing in Yiddish, but he published little of it.  Over the years 1945-1949, he served as literary editor of the Parisian serial, Arbeter vort (Workers’ word), in which he published articles on Yiddish literary and cultural issues.  From 1949 he was a member of the editorial board of the daily newspaper Unzer vort (Our word) in Paris, for which he wrote on a daily basis articles, essays, and features.  He was also co-editor of Kultur-yedies (Cultural information) in Paris (1949-1952) and of Parizer almanakh (Parisian almanac) (1955).  In book form, he published: Fun aktueln un eybikn, eseyen (From the real and the eternal, essays), concerning philosophical and Jewish issues as well as treatises on Yiddish literature which he characterized with a peculiar approach to the problems of literature and culture; Tseshotene kerner, eseyen (Scattered grain, essays) (Paris: Jewish Cultural Congress of France, 1961), 57 pp.; Verter un vertn (Words and worth) (Tel Aviv: {Peretz Publ., 1965}, 327 pp.; Netsekh yidishkeyt, eseyen, tsum ondenk (The endurance of Jewishness, essays, in remembrance) (Paris: 1980), 336 pp.  He also wrote under the pen names: L. D., L. Nakhumi, and A. Vov, among others.  He was living until his death in Paris.

Sources: Yankev Glatshteyn, in Idisher kemfer (New York) (August 27, 1954); Glatshteyn, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (September 6, 1954); M. Ravitsh, in Keneder odler (June 14, 1954); Dr. A. Mukdoni, in Tsukunft (New York) (February 1955); Kh. L. Fuks, in Fun noentn over (New York) 3 (1957); M. Dluzhnovski, in Kultur un dertsiung (New York) (March 1958).

[Additional information from: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 187.]

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