Sunday, June 10, 2012

Mazl tov to a Couple of My Favorite Professors

I love it when terrific books about Yiddish win praise, love and cash money prizes. I love it even more when said books are written by young, sexy, dynamic, brilliant scholars of Yiddish. (I hope you can't tell I'm also deep green with envy.)

First, congratulations to University of Ottawa professor Rebecca Margolis. She has won won a Vine Canadian Jewish Book Award in the Yiddish category. Professor Margolis won for her book Jewish Roots, Canadian Soil: Yiddish Culture in Montreal, 1905-1945.  

I saw Rebecca talk about her book, I think it was last year, at YIVO, in the great hall. One of the most interesting things I learned from her talk was how the development of Yiddish culture and life in Montreal was so different from that in, say, New York. Most importantly, Yiddish speakers in Montreal didn't have to contend with an already hegemonic, Yiddish hostile, German-Jewish elite. How did that turn of events affect the development of Yiddish press in Montreal? You'll just have to read the book now, won't you?

York University Jewish studies phenom, Kalman 'Keith' Weiser, has also won a Vine award for his book Jewish People, Yiddish Nation: Noah Prylucki and the Folkists in Poland. I don't think I've seen Kalman speak about his book (though I saw him give an excellent paper about Max Weinreich at the Weinreich in America conference a few months ago.) But Jewish People, Yiddish Nation won the Vine prize for Scholarship and I really want to read it. 
Using hitherto unexplored archival sources, memoirs, interviews, and materials from the vibrant interwar Jewish and Polish presses, Kalman Weiser investigates the rise and fall of Yiddishism and of Prylucki's political party, the Folkists, in the post-World War One era. Jewish People, Yiddish Nation reveals the life of a remarkable individual and the fortunes of a major cultural movement that has long been obscured.

Big mazl tov to Rebecca and Kalman on their accomplishments and for enriching the Jewish community with their hard work!!!

1 comment:

  1. Listening to my first ever ex-Lubavitcher death metal while reading your bagrisung to Rivke and Kalman. There's a whole lotta hotness going on here at the Rootless Cosmopolitan!