Page 41 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 5 (1946-1947)

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, | ^HE output of Hebrew literature during the past year was
-■־ again so rich in works of all kinds tha t it is difficult to deter-
mine its abundance in all fields. Hebrew literature in its various
aspects has become too specialized for adequate treatment by
any one person. In this survey of the year’s productivity, we can
only hope to deal with a sampling of the books tha t have come
from the Palestine presses. We shall, however, endeavor to treat
the important works which have appeared in this country since
the writing of our survey for last year’s
Jewish Book Annual.
In preparing a survey of this kind, it is still difficult to become
accustomed to the idea tha t outside of Palestine and to some
measure also in the United States, there is no Hebrew literary
activity to speak of. There are few exceptions to this rule today.
The third volume of
(Fortress), edited in England by
Dr. Simon Rawidowicz; a volume of biblical studies,
by Zusia Wohl, published in Buenos Aires, and a small
volume of religious poetry by Rabbi Meyer Schwartzman of Win-
nipeg, Canada, are probably the only works of this kind published.
This makes the literary activity in the United States loom all the
more important and we therefore should take into account any
indications of future growth. The most encouraging single under-
taking of the past year was undoubtedly the renewal of
the well-known Hebrew quarterly which appeared for many years
in Europe and later in Palestine. The periodical will now be
edited in this country by Aaron Zeitlin and Eisig Silbershlag and
will afford a serious forum for literary and scientific expression.
Another sign of vitality is the continued reprinting of religious
volumes and source works. During the past year, we have had
new editions of the
Jerusalem Talmud
Abot de Rab Nathan
Moreh Nebukim
and many other such works, showing tha t there
is a considerable market for this type of literature.
While the number of original works which appeared in America
during the period under survey is not large, their calibre is high and
they cover a variety of subjects. I t is noteworthy tha t three books