VELVL TSHERNIN (b. 1958)
A poet and literary scholar, he was born in Moscow. He graduated from the Lomonosov Moscow University (Faculty of History, Ethnography Department). Over the years 1981-1983, he studied in the group “Yidish” (Yiddish) at the advanced literature course at the Maxim Gorky Literature Institute. He debuted in print in 1983 with poems in Sovetish heymland (Soviet homeland), where he worked for a time on the editorial board. He went on to publish a series of poetry cycles in Soviet and other publications. In addition to poetry, he had published a number of literary critical and popular articles and notes in Yiddish, Russian, and Hebrew publications. As a supplement to the journal Sovetish heymland 11 (1986), he brought out a booklet of interviews entitled Dialogn vegn der yidisher kultur in fssr (Dialogues on Jewish culture in the USSR). He is also the author of scholarly articles on Yiddish ethnography and linguistics. In 1990 he made aliya to Israel, studying Judaism at the Shalom Hartman University in Jerusalem and literature at Bar-Ilan University. He defended a doctoral thesis on the topic of “elements of ethnic identification in Soviet Yiddish literature from the late 1950s through the early 1990s.” He was a recipient of the Dovid Hofshetyn Prize for creative literary work in Yiddish.
His work includes: Dialogn vegn der yidisher kultur in fssr (Moscow: Sovetski pisatel, 1986), 62 pp.; Beynashmoshes (Twilight), poems (Tel Aviv: Shul-bukh, 1997), 136 pp.; Alibe-didi (In my opinion), poetry (Tel Aviv: Leivick Publ., 2004), 119 pp.
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. 171.