Sunday 15 November 2015


LEON DUKHOVNE (LEÓN DUJOVNE) (November 15, 1898-January 16, 1984)
            He was born in a town near Odessa, Ukraine.  He moved at one year of age to Argentina and lived for a period of time in the colony of Entre Rios.  He received a traditional education and studied later in a secular high school, graduating from the philosophy faculty of the University of Buenos Aires.  He later would be a professor of psychology there.  He was active in Jewish community and cultural life.  He was president of “Hereika” and one of the leaders of the Argentine division of YIVO and other Jewish institutions in Buenos Aires.  He was the author of a number of important works in Spanish concerning philosophical issues and on the influence of Jewish philosophy, such as: Spinoza: Su vida, su época, su obra, su influencia (Spinoza: His life, his epoch, his work, his influence), four volumes (Buenos Aires, 1941-1945); Thomas Mann, las ideas y los seres en su obra (Thomas Mann, the ideas and the themes in his work) (Cordoba, 1946), 293 pp.; Introducción a la historia de la filosofía judía (Introduction to Jewish philosophy) (Buenos Aires, 1949), 236 pp.; a work on the influence of Jewish philosophical thought of the Middle Ages on modern Western European thought (1930); and many more.  He also contributed to Idishe tsaytung (Jewish newspaper) in Buenos Aires, in which he published essays and articles on various issues, as well as treatises on the philosophical work of Hermann Cohen, Salomon Maimon, William Nathanson, Dr. Chaim Zhitlovky, and others.  He was a contributor as well to the Spanish-language newspaper La Nación (The nation) in Buenos Aires, in which he published articles on Jewish philosophy and Yiddish literature.  He also published translations of Y. L. Peretz, H. D. Nomberg, Avrom Reyzen, and Sholem Asch and stories by pothers Yiddish writers.  He translated into Spanish several volumes of Shimen Dubnov’s Di nayste geshikhte fun yidishn folk (Recent history of the Jewish people) as Historia contemporánea del pueblo judío, the first volume together with Sh. Resnick (Buenos Aires, 1925), and Dr. Chaim Zhitlovsky’s Aynshtayns relativitets-teorye (Einstein’s theory of relativity) as La teoria de la relatividad de Einstein (Buenos Aires, 1929), 198 pp.  He was living in Buenos Aires, where he died.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen archive at YIVO in New York; Davke (Buenos Aires) 2 (1949); L. Boleslavski, in jubilee volume for Di yidishe tsaytung (Buenos Aires, 1940); Enciclopedia Judaica Castellana (Mexico, 1948), p. 552.

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