Page 11 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 30

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S
t e in b a c h
— I
n tr od u c t io n
3
originally to the Bible. But its import extended to the broader
generic meaning of Torah as culture, and it is upon this expanded
definition that the editors of the
Jewish Book Annual
focus their
guidelines.
The pattern of continuity from volume to volume has been
invoked wherever possible in volume 30. For example, Dr. Walter
J. Fischel discussed “The Literary Heritage of the Persian Speak­
ing Jews” in volume 27; “The Literary Creativity of the Jews
of Cochin on the Malabar Coast” in volume 28; “The Literary
Activities of the ‘Bene-Israel’ in India” in volume 29. In the
current volume, Dr. Fischel has written on “The Literary Activi­
ties of the Arabic-Speaking Jews in India.” Dr. Fischel’s essay
for volume 31 a year hence will be “The Literature of the Ara­
maic-Speaking Jews of Kurdistan.” While each essay is a separate
individual study, the five papers when completed will constitute
an exotic organic unity.
Evelyn Miller’s “The History of the Montreal Public Library
and Archives” falls into the same pattern of continuity. I t is the
thirteenth in a series preceded by the following: “Libraries in
Israel” ; “On Community Libraries” ; “The Hebrew Union Col­
lege Library” ; “The Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary
of America” ; “T h e Mendel Gottesman Library of Yeshiva Uni­
versity”; “The Jewish Division of the New York Public Library” ;
“The Library of the Dropsie College” ; “The Y I V O Library” ;
“The Judaica Collection at Harvard” ; “The Jewish Studies Col­
lection at UCLA” ; “Library of the American Jewish Historical
Society,” and “The Library and Archives of the Leo Baeck Insti­
tute in New York.”
Charles Berlin’s “The Jewish Press in France” is not only
intensely interesting, but intriguing as well. Although the French
Jewish community ranks third among the Jewish communities
of the Diaspora, we are informed by Dr. Berlin that “Today the
Jewish press in France numbers some 70 publications dealing with
all aspects of Jewish life.” Only in the State of Israel do we also
find a vigorous state of journalistic health. In his paper “Israeli
Periodicals—A Review of the Contemporary Scene,” published in
volume 28, Dr. Berlin reported : “It would be a reasonably accu­
rate estimate that there are well over a thousand periodicals being
published in Israel today.” In volume 27, Dr. Berlin wrote on
“The Israel PL-480 Program, 1964-1969: A Review.” Thus, his
current paper is his third in a continuing series.
I t should be added, in passing, that the high casualty rate of
perishing newspapers in the United States renders all the more
significant and more astounding the journalistic plateau attained
by the Israeli and the French Jewish communities. One must
almost doubt credulity when one considers that in New York