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August 12, 1952: The Night of The Murdered Poets

Saivetz, Carol R.; Sheila Levin Woods (Edited and Compiled by)

Published by National Conference on Soviet Jewry, New York, 1972
Condition: g to vg Soft cover

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Large octavo. [2], 34, [2]pp. Original illustrated wrappers. Commemorative book with poetry, writings and illustrations by and about the August 13th victims of The Night of the Murdered Poets. The Night of the Murdered Poets was an execution of thirteen Soviet Jews in the Lubyanka Prison in Moscow, Soviet Union on August 12, 1952. The arrests were first made in September 1948 and June 1949. All defendants were falsely accused of espionage and treason as well as many other crimes. After their arrests, they were tortured, beaten, and isolated for three years before being formally charged. There were five Yiddish writers among these defendants, all of whom were a part of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee* (JAC). The fifteen defendants were: - Peretz Markish (1895-1952), Yiddish poet, co-founder the School of Writers, a Yiddish literary school in Soviet Russia. - David Hofstein (1889-1952), Yiddish poet. - Itzik Feffer (1900-1952), Yiddish poet, informer for the Ministry of Internal Affairs. - Leib Kvitko (1890-1952), Yiddish poet and children's writer. - David Bergelson (1884-1952), distinguished novelist. - Solomon Lozovsky (1878-1952), Director of Soviet Information Bureau, Deputy Commissar of Foreign Affairs, vigorously denounced accusations against himself and others. - Boris Shimeliovich (1892-1952), Medical Director of the Botkin Clinical Hospital, Moscow. - Benjamin Zuskin (1899-1952), assistant to and successor of Solomon Mikhoels as director of the Moscow State Jewish Theater. - Joseph Yuzefovich (1890-1952), researcher at the Institute of History, Soviet Academy of Sciences, trade union leader. - Leon Talmy (1893-1952), translator, journalist, former member of the Communist Party USA. - Ilya Vatenberg (1887-1952), translator and editor of Eynikeyt, newspaper of the JAC; Labor Zionist leader in Austria and U.S. before returning to the USSR in 1933. - Chaika Vatenburg-Ostrovskaya (1901-1952), wife of Ilya Vatenburg, translator at JAC. - Emilia Teumin (1905-1952), deputy editor of the Diplomatic Dictionary; editor, International Division, Soviet Information Bureau. - Solomon Bregman (1895-1953), Deputy Commissar of Foreign Affairs. Fell into a coma after denouncing the trial and died in prison five months after the executions. - Lina Stern (or Shtern) (1875-1968), the first female academician in the USSR and is best known for her pioneering work on blood-brain barrier. She was the only survivor out of the fifteen defendants. Some who were either directly or indirectly connected to the JAC at the time were also arrested in the years surrounding the trial. Although Solomon Mikhoels was not arrested, his death was ordered by Stalin in 1948. Der Nister, another Yiddish writer, was arrested in 1949, and died in a labor camp in 1950. Literary critic Yitzhak Nusinov died in prison and journalists Shmuel Persov and Miriam Zheleznova were shot - all in 1950. Minor shelf wear. Spine slightly rubbed. Wrappers in overall good, interior in very good condition. * Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee (JAC): The threat of an attack on Soviet Russia by Nazi Germany catalyzed the start of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee (JAC), a committee reaching out to Jews worldwide to support the Soviet war effort against Nazi Germany. Solomon Mikhoels, a Yiddish actor and director, headed the Committee. Other members of the committee were prominent Yiddish literary figures, actors, and doctors who wanted to help influence Jewish support for the Soviet Union through their writing and also using radio broadcasts from Russia to different countries. In 1943, Mikhoels and the vice chairman of the Anti-Fascist Committee, Itzik Fefer, traveled to the U.S. and England to help raise money. As Nazi Germany secured its stronghold in Soviet Russia, Jewish culture and identity was destroyed in the Holocaust. The last influence left in Russia were the Yiddish figures in the JAC, and soon the initial purpose for the committee was changed. The committee felt it had a duty. Bookseller Inventory # 37870

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Bibliographic Details

Title: August 12, 1952: The Night of The Murdered ...

Publisher: National Conference on Soviet Jewry, New York

Publication Date: 1972

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition:g to vg

Edition: First edition.

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