Abstract

David Bergelson (1884-1952) emerged as a major literary figure who wrote in Yiddish before WWI. He was one of the founders of the Kiev Kultur-Lige and his work was at the center of the Yiddish-speaking world of the time. He was well known for creating characters who often felt the painful after-effects of the past and the clumsiness of bodies stumbling through the actions of daily life as their familiar worlds crumbled around them. In this contemporary assessment of Bergelson and his fiction, Harriet Murav focuses on untimeliness, anachronism, and warped temporality as an emotional, sensory, existential, and historical background to Bergleson's work and world. Murav grapples with the great modern theorists of time and memory, especially Henri Bergson, Sigmund Freud, and Walter Benjamin, to present Bergelson as an integral part of the philosophical and artistic experiments, political and technological changes, and cultural context of Russian and Yiddish modernism that marked his age. As a comparative and interdisciplinary study of Yiddish literature and Jewish culture, this work adds a new, ethnic dimension to understandings of the turbulent birth of modernism. 1. This book explores the work of David Bergelson, a prolific Yiddish fiction writer and interpreter of Jewish life in early 20th century Russia and Eastern Europe. 2. It offers a fresh, more expansive study of Bergelson's works, beyond the 1920s, giving critical attention to his fiction and non-fiction from 1909 though 1946 and placing it within the context of European and Russian literary modernism. 3. Harriet Murav is a senior scholar who has an extensive publishing record. In the past she has often published with Stanfard UP.
Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherIndiana University Press
Number of pages360
ISBN (Electronic)9780253036940
ISBN (Print)9780253036919, 9780253036902
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2019

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