Sunday 14 August 2022


ARL HOFSHTEYN (1918-1941)

            Although precise information about his life remains unknown, he was a poet. According to his poems, which he placed in the newspaper Birobidzhaner shtern (Birobidzhan star) and other serial publications, one can assume that came from Ukraine. In the second half of the 1930s, he lived in Birobidzhan, graduated from middle school and later the pedagogical technicum there, and was an editor of the regional Birobidzhan radio committee where he ran the broadcasts for children. Among the young Birobidzhan poets, he was the youngest, and he was often seen among the students. From the memoirs of Birobidzhan writers, he was a darling of the young, for whom he would frequently provide lessons. When WWII broke out, he left for the front. He perished on the battlefield in 1941 at the age of twenty-three. He was never able to publish a book.

            His published writing include: “Dem bruders biks un shverd” (The brother’s gun and sword), a poetry cycle in the collection Lire (Lyre) (Moscow: Sovetski pisatel, 1985).

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. 113-14.

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