Page 82 - Jewish Book Annual Volume 9 (1950-1951)

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The Jewish Book Council has continued its policy of presenting citations to
libraries tha t meet the minimum criteria for libraries of Jewish schools, synagogues,
centers, bureaus of Jewish education and similar agencies. A total of 46 citations
have been presented to date.
The following organizat ions were awarded citations during the past year: Isaac
M. Wise Temple, Cincinnati ; Jewish Community Council, Los Angeles; Pa rk Syn-
agogue of Cleveland Jewish Center, Cleveland Heights; Anshe Chesed Temple,
Erie, Pa.; Temple Beth El, Detroit; Covenant Club of Illinois, Chicago; Horace J.
Wolf Memorial Library of the JYM & WA, Rochester; Temple Beth Sholom,
Miami Beach; S. Robert Schultz Memorial Library of the YM & WHA of Wash-
ington Heights, New York; and Bureau of Jewish Education, Omaha.
The efforts of the JWB Bureau of Public Information in the promotion of Jewish
Book Month in 1949 via press, radio and television met with marked success. The
New York Journal American
carried an editorial on Jewish Book Month. The
English-Jewish, Yiddish and Hebrew press gave unstinting cooperation by devoting
considerable space to Jewish Book Month.
Adequate press coverage was had throughout the year. Among the feature re-
leases of the Council were the following: “The Joy of the Book,” by Mort imer J.
Cohen, a timely article on Simhat Torah and Jewish literature; “American Jewry ’s
Literary Year Book,” by Rabbi Abraham Burstein, an appraisal of volume 8 of
the Jewish Book Annual; “New Homes for Hi t ler’s Jewish Library,” by Dr. Hanna
Arendt, a description of the program of the Jewish Cultural Reconstruction; and
“Giant of the Hebrew Spirit,” by Maurice Schneps, a tribute to Edmond Fleg on
his 75 th birthday.
The Executive Board of the Council held meetings regularly throughout the
year. Many committees were active including the following: Library Citations,
Editorial Advisory Board of
In Jewish Bookland
, Editorial Advisory Board of
Jewish Book Annual
, Budget, Reading Circles, Judges for Literary Awards, and
other Special Committees.
The Annual Meeting of the National Committee of the Council was held on
May 17, 1950 at the Jewish Museum. Dr. Ludwig Lewisohn, noted lecturer and
literary critic, who is professor of Comparative Literature at Brandeis University,
delivered the principal address on “A Panorama of a Half-Century of American
Jewish Literature.”
In appraising American-Jewish literary productivity, Dr. Lewisohn stressed
tha t “given the character and history of American writing within which the Amer-
ican Jews have had to work, we have not done ill quantitatively or qualitatively.”
He said tha t “we tower above the Jewries of both England and France,” adding,
“only the Jews in Germany, whose productivity was tragically interrupted in 1933,
have surpassed American Jews.”
Dr. Mortimer J . Cohen, editor of
In Jewish Bookland
for six years, was unan-
imously elected President of the Council. He presided a t the cultural session of
the meeting.
“American Jewry is slowly waking up to the fact tha t it can survive only by
drawing strength from its spiritual heritage,” Dr. Solomon Grayzel declared in