Sunday 5 March 2017


ROKHL LURYE (June 1886-January 25, 1929)
           She was born in Vorzhan (Veiviržėnai), Lithuania.  She descended from the Lurye family of Zhager (Žagarė).  She studied Hebrew and Torah in a religious elementary school.  At age twelve she arrived in the United States.  She worked in New York at first in a sweatshop, while at the same time pursuing self-study and later entering a commercial school.  She also worked as a nurse in a hospital.  Under the influence of Jewish anarchist circles in New York, she became interested in Yiddish literature and began writing in Yiddish.  In 1909 she published her story “Vayse lilyen” (White lilies) in Fraye arbeter-shtime (Free voice of labor) in New York, and later published longer and shorter stories in: Avrom Reyzen’s Naye land (New land), Glaykhheyt (Equality), and Der idisher kemfer (The Jewish fighter).  In 1915 she became a regular contributor to Louis Miller’s Varheyt (Truth); in 1917 she was working for Tog (Day), in 1920 for Di tsayt (The times), and thereafter for Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal).  In book form, she compiled a portion of her stories under the title Modne mentshn (Silly people) (New York: Nay tsayt, 1918), 251 pp.  She also published Zibn vayber in eynem (Seven wives altogether) (New York, 1925), 16 pp.  She was the wife of the writer Z. Broches.  She was among the first members of the Y. L. Perets Writers’ Association and among the founders of the American Division of YIVO.  In 1925 she made a trip to Israel where she stayed for about a year, and she described her impressions of the Jewish community there in a lengthy series of sketches and images in Morgn-zhurnal in New York.  She also wrote under the pseudonym Paula Nor.  She died in New York.

Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 2, with a bibliography; Sh. Yudson, in Oyfkum (New York) (February 1929); obituary notices in Bikher-velt (Warsaw) (March 1929) and Literarishe bleter (Warsaw) (February 8, 1929); M. Dantsis, “Zikhroynes fun der ist,” Tog (New York) (May 29, 1948).
Borekh Tshubinski

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