Page 40 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 3

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A Survey of Literary Output During Last Two Years
a a k o v
a b a k o f f
One of the most remarkable aspects of Palestine creativity
during the war period has been the accelerated production of
Hebrew books in all branches of letters. Whereas the severe
curtailment of paper on the part of the Palestine government
and the rising printing costs might have led us to expect a marked
decline in the number of books published, the reverse has been
true. During the war period there have sprung up new publishing
houses, magazines and daily newspapers. Scarcely a day passes
when at least two books do not come from the Palestine presses.
This increased activity is reflected especially in Zionist literature
which, during the past two years under survey, has seen the
publication of significant works of
(ingathering), anthol-
ogies, historical studies, etc. Unfortunately, this aspect of Pales-
tine creativity has remained one of the “best-kept secrets” of the
new Palestine. Perhaps this is due to the difficulties of trans-
porting Palestine Hebrew literature during wartime (some of the
books mentioned in this survey have not arrived in America as
yet and are known to us only through the Palestine press), but
a good deal of material which is available should have been
popularized whenever feasible.
Among the Zionist bodies and institutions which have under-
taken ingathering projects in the fields of Zionist history and
ideology are the Bialik Foundation, the Rabbi Kook Foundation,
the Joint Committee on Youth Affairs and the Labor Federation
(through its publication arm
Am Oved
, “Working People”). The
Bialik Foundation has continued its cyclopedia of Zionism with
the issuance of the first volume of its second part,
The Hibbat
Zion Era
, edited by Samuel Yavnieli and containing sources and
a lengthy introduction on the movement from its inception until
the days of “Autoemancipation.” Word has just been received
of the publication of still another volume of the cyclopedia, as
*Reprinted from New Palestine, February 4, 1944.
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