Friday 15 March 2019


MEYER KUTSHINSKI (KUCINSKI) (March 11, 1904-September 29, 1976)
            He was born in Vlotslavek (Włocławek), Poland.  He studied in a “cheder metukan” (improved religious elementary school) and later in a Polish Hebrew high school.  He was active in the left Labor Zionists.  In 1935 he emigrated to Brazil and settled in São Paolo.  At first, he worked as a peddler, later as a teacher of Yiddish literature.  He wrote stories, essays, studies, and literary criticism for all the Brazilian Yiddish serials, as well as for: Di prese (The press), Shrayber-tribune (Writers’ tribune), Tsukunft (Future), and Yivo-bleter (Pages from YIVO).  Earlier he had written for Vilner tog (Vilna day), Folksblat (People’s newspaper) in Kovno, and youth publications of the left Labor Zionists.  He placed a longer piece on Yiddish literary work in Brazil in Pinkes far der forshung fun der yidisher literatur un prese (Record of research on Yiddish literature and the press) (New York, 1965), several essays in Vlotslavek un svive, gedenk-bukh (Włocławek and environs, remembrance volume) (Tel Aviv, 1967), and a study of Portuguese elements in Yiddish in Argentiner yivo-shriftn (Argentinian YIVO writings), vol. 3 (Buenos Aires, 1945).  Five of his stories appeared in Shmuel Rozhanski’s Brazilyanish, antologye (Brazilian anthology) (Buenos Aires, 1973).  In book form: Nusekh brazil (Brazilian style) (Tel Aviv: Perets Publ., 1963), 185 pp.  “In most of his stories,” wrote A. Lipiner, “Kutshinski deals with the immigrant, peddler era with all the pains of childbirth and psychological zigzags of a European small-town Jewish immigrant, who rapidly turns up, somewhat bewildered, on wild, new terrain.”  He wrote two plays: Der flam fun khane senesh (The flame of Hannah Szenes) and Zishe breytbard (Zishe Breitbart)—neither published.  He also published a pamphlet (with Yoysef Rozen): Der arbeter-klas in daytshland untern terror fun der s. ts. politsey (The working class in Germany under the terror of the S. Z. police).  His political pseudonym was: M. Koyavski.  He died in São Paolo.

Sources: M. Shenderay, in Idishe tsaytung (Buenos Aires) (May 1, 1964); Shloyme Bikl, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (December 20, 1964); Y. Z. Rayzman, Yidishe sheferishkeyt in lender fun portugalishn loshn (Jewish creativity in lands of the Portuguese language) (Tsfat, 1975), pp. 289-96; Yeshurin archive, YIVO (New York).
Berl Cohen

[Additional information from: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 480.]

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