Wednesday 9 May 2018


            He was born in Yanishok (Joniškis), Lithuania.  He studied in religious primary school and yeshiva.  He later studied at the Hebrew high school in Shavel (Šiauliai).  In 1915 he immigrated with his mother to Pretoria, South Africa, where his father had been living since 1912.  He attended the local English schools.  In August 1928 he debuted in print with poetry in the monthly journal Dorem afrike (South Africa) in Johannesburg.  In the 1930s he published poems and articles in the New York monthly Proletarishe shtime (Proletarian voice) and in Gezerd vort (Gezerd [= All-Union Association for the Agricultural Settlement of Jewish Workers in the USSR] word), as well as in Afrikaner idishe tsaytung (African Jewish newspaper) and Idisher ekspres (Jewish express)—in Johannesburg.  In July 1946 through theatrical circles in Pretoria, his war play, Khurbn (Destruction) in four acts, was staged, later also his comedy in one act, Mister geber (Mr. Geber).  He also contributed articles, poems, and translations from Yiddish to the local monthly Pretoria Jewish Review; in February 1952 he became editor of the journal.  He was active in Jewish cultural life in Yiddish and English.  He was last living in Pretoria, South Africa.

Source: Y. M. Sherman, “Yidish-dikhter un dikhtung in dorem-afrike” (Yiddish poets and poetry in South Africa), Dorem-afrike (Johannesburg) (June 1954).
Yankev Kahan

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