Thursday 12 November 2015


AVROM-YOYSEF (ABRAHAM JOSEPH) DUBELMAN (December 5, 1908-January 13, 1990)
            He was born in Rayvits (Rejowiec), Lublin region, into a Hassidic home.  When he was two years of age, he lost his father and older brother Yankev, and he became the head of the family.  He studied in religious elementary school, Talmud Torah, and for a short time in Hebrew-Yiddish public school.  He began working at an early age as an upholsterer.  In 1925 he emigrated to Cuba where he worked as a clerk in a village shop, and peddled and worked as an upholsterer.  He began writing at age fourteen.  He wrote a great deal in the solitude of the Cuban “camp” and debuted in print with a story entitled “Di tentserin” (The dancer) in the journal Tsuzamen (Together) in New York in 1926.  His story “Heys blut” (Warm blood), published in 1929 in a Sunday edition of the Forverts (Forward) in New York, opened the doors for him to the Havana writers’ group, and with his first honorarium he moved and settled in Havana.  He worked in a business and from time to time he wrote for the Jewish Center’s journal Oyfgang (Arise).  In 1936 he became a regular contributor to the newspaper Havaner lebn (Havana life) which appeared twice each week, where over the course of years he published his stories, as well as editorials, feature pieces, and literary and theater criticism.  In 1942 he won second prize in a story contest run by Tsukunft (Future) in New York for his story “Der blinder” (The blind man).  His first volume of stories appeared in 1935: Af kubaner erd (On Cuban soil) (Havana, 1935), 139 pp.  He edited the journal Undzer shul (Our school) in Havana (1941) and the anthology Der shtral (The ray [of light]) (1942).  From 1943 he was co-editor (with Sender M. Kaplan) of the annuals Havaner lebn almanakh (Almanac of Havana life).  He also contributed novellas and stories to Tog (Day) in New York.  In 1954 two volumes of his stories appeared in print: Der blinder (Havana, 164 pp.) and Der balans (The balance) with an afterword by D. Utyanski (Havana, 220 pp.).  From 1943 he was the ITA correspondent in Cuba.  He wrote as well under the pseudonyms: Id, A Dibuk, Tshumke, and Dr. Namelbud.

Sources: Dr. B. Grober, in Tsukunft (New York) (September 1956); Y. London, in Kubaner motivn (Cuban motifs) (1942); S. Kaplan, in Kubaner motivn; Shmuel Niger, in Tsukunft (September 1942); Y. Reznik, in Havaner lebn almanakh (1943); L. Ran, Hemshekh af kubaner erd, zamlbukh tsum 25 yorikn yoyvl fun yidishn tsenter in kuba, 1925-1950 (Continued on Cuban soil, anthology on the 25th jubilee of the Jewish Center in Cuba, 1925-1950) (Havana, 1951); H. Shishler, in Yizker-bukh khelm (Remembrance book of Chelm) (Johannesburg, 1954; Shishler, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (June 24, 1954); Yankev Glatshteyn, in Idisher kemfer (New York) (August 10, 1956); Y. Sh. (Shatski), in In Jewish Bookland (New York) (February 1954).

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