Wednesday, 30 January 2019


SORE KAHAN (1885-1941/1942)
            She was a poet and author of stories, born in the village of Maksimovitsh, Byelorussia.  After graduating from the local Jewish school, she moved to Babruysk and worked there as a manager of the municipal library.  In 1929 she began publishing poetry in Minsk’s Oktyabr (October), to which she was already contributing correspondence pieces.  In 1935 she settled in Minsk, where she took evening classes in the philology department of the Minsk Pedagogical Institute.  She contributed to the literary collection Birebidzhan (Birobidzhan) (Moscow, 1936), Komyug (Communist youth), Sovetishe literatur (Soviet literature), and Farmest (Competition), among others.  For a short time she was a member of the editorial board of Shtern (Star) in Minsk (1941).  In April 1941 she read aloud her play Khone khodosh (Khone Khodosh) in Minsk.  Her other work includes: Shprakhḳentenish, arbet bukh af shprakh farn tsveyṭn kontsenter (Linguistics, language workbook for second stage of secondary education)[1] (Minsk: State Publ. of Byelorussia, 1930), 160 pp.; In veg (On the road), poetry (Minsk: State Publ. of Byelorussia, 1934), 41 pp.; Mayn heymland (My homeland), poetry (Minsk State Publ. of Byelorussia, 1938), 35 pp.; Di ershte premye, a monolog fun an eltere froy (The first prize, a monologue of an older woman) (Minsk: State Publ. of Byelorussia, 1938), 15 pp.; Undzere mentshn (Our people), poems (Minsk: State Publ. of Byelorussia, 1940), 34 pp.; Der fidler (The fiddler), stories (Minsk: State Publ. of Byelorussia, 1941), 174 pp.  When the Germans occupied Minsk, she was confined in the ghetto, and she died soon thereafter.

Sources: Chone Shmeruk, comp., Pirsumim yehudiim babrit-hamoatsot, 1917-1961 (Jewish publications in the Soviet Union, 1917-1961) (Jerusalem, 1962), see index; Oyfboy (Riga) (May 1941); Eynikeyt (Moscow) (November 1, 1945); Yeshurin archive, YIVO (New York).
Leyzer Ran.

[Additional information from: Chaim Beider, Leksikon fun yidishe shrayber in ratn-farband (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers in the Soviet Union), ed. Boris Sandler and Gennady Estraikh (New York: Congress for Jewish Culture, Inc., 2011), pp. 310-11.]

[1] Translator’s note.  WorldCat gives this title as the work of Khayim Kahan; see also the entry for him herein (  Also, Beider does not mention this work in his entry for Sore Kahan. (JAF)

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