Page 115 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 8 (1949-1950)

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THE JEWISH BOOK COUNCIL OF AMERICA
IN 5709 (1948—49)
By
P
h i l i p
G
o o d m a n
The objectives of the Jewish Book Council of America may be stated briefly
as follows: the stimulation of an abiding zeal for knowledge among young and
old; the development of a Jewish cultural atmosphere in homes; the enrichment
o f educational programs of clubs, study circles and discussion groups; and the
enlargement of book collections in institutional libraries, reading rooms, and pri-
vate homes.
To gauge the qualitative progress of the Council in the past year towards the
achievement of its objectives has not been possible. The objectives are so far
reaching that their achievement cannot be expected in a year, a decade, or perhaps
even a longer period. The Council alone cannot expect to reach these goals for
their realization is dependent on many other forces in the American Jewish com-
munity. However, the Council can report definite quantitative implementation of
its program as evidenced by increased activity in many areas. The growing
participation in Jewish Book Month, the increased circulation of “In Jewish Book-
land,” and the wider distribution of program materials bear witness to the ever-
widening influence of the Council. The constant requests for guidance in the
selection of books and the building up of Jewish libraries and collections that come
daily from individuals, organizations, public libraries, and other institutions, are
further testimony to the significant role that the Council is playing on the American
scene. While until a few years ago the Jewish Book Council of America promoted
Jewish Book Month primarily, it is now conducting a variety of activities and
services throughout the entire year.
PUBLICATIONS
The Council in 5709 has continued to concentrate attention on the preparation
and distribution of program materials, bibliographical aids, and other items, as
follows:
Jewish Book Annual
— The seventh volume of the tri-lingual Jewish Book Annual,
consisting of 228 pages, was issued. The following are the editors: Abraham G.
Duker, English Section; Dr. Pinkhos Churgin, Hebrew Section; and Moshe Stark-
man, Yiddish Section. The managing editor is Philip Goodman.
In Jewish Bookland
— This semi-monthly periodical, under the very capable
editorship of Dr. Mortimer J. Cohen, has been receiving an ever-increasingly warm
response from its readers. “In Jewish Bookland,” consisting of 12 to 20 pages, is
recognized as a basic periodical for book reviews and notes about current books of
Jewish interest. Five issues appeared during the year. In addition to Dr. Cohen,
the other members of the Editorial Advisory Board are Rabbi Jacob Kabakoff,
Dr. Jacob Shatzky, Dr. Azriel Eisenberg, Dr. Solomon Grayzel and Philip Good-
man.
A questionnaire post card was distributed to a sampling of 1,000 readers of
“ In Jewish Bookland” for the purpose of ascertaining their interest in the publica-
tion as well as specific recommendations for changes in format and content. The
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