Page 16 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 1

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Personally, and on beha lf of the Amer ican Jewish Commi t tee ,
I ex tend best wishes for success in these endeavors.
a u r i c e
e r t h e i m
President, T h e Amer ican Jewish Commi t tee .
Books are doubly, trebly, im po r tan t to the Jew. T h e reasons
are obvious and they are threefold.
I. T h e Jew has a history. So t rue is this tha t the Jew m igh t
be called history, tha t is, an early volume of h um an history. T h i s
history has created, or been evolved ou t of, a l i tera tu re , bound
as a single volume, b u t actually a widely varied, wi tha l uni-
formly precious l i terature .
II. T h e people goes on, the history continues, the l i te ra tu re
develops—only the first volume thereof hav ing been con ta ined
w i th in ou r Hebrew Bible. People, Book and H istory march
forward together. Ne i the r the people, no r its story, no r yet its
literary genius is exhausted, for all three together are living and
endur ing . None of the three dare be ignored or neglected.
I I I . For the Jew ignorance of tha t history is in tel lectual suicide.
T o be unm ind fu l of the pricelessness of the supreme creat ion
of a people w i th which one is bound up is psychic self-oblitera-
tion. Destruct ion and devastation from w i thou t may be con-
tinuous and yet no t be i r reparable. A people does n o t survive
if l i te ra tu re be set aside; for a visionless people is sure to perish.
S. S.
W i s e ,
President , T h e Jewish In s t i tu te of Re l ig ion .
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