The People of the Book inthe World of Books isaRussian bimonthly publication for serious readers with Jewish interests. Our English website includes only thesummaries of thepublished articles. Toaccess the complete text of them, please visit the Russian version of this website.


June 2021

This issue of the magazine features:

• Names: Shimon Markish’s Testimony

The historian and literary scholar Shimon Markish (1931–2003) was the son of the famous Yiddish poet Peretz Markish, who was shot by Stalin’s executioners in August 1952 along with other prominent representatives of Soviet Jewish culture. Shimon emigrated to the West in the 1970s. The magazine publishes, for the first time, the Russian original of his “testimonial report” on the situation of Jews in the USSR, which he presented in 1979 at a conference of French Jewish intellectuals in Paris.

Synopsis: The Case of Jan Tomasz Gross

The brief review presents a collection of conversations between the Polish-American historian Jan Tomasz Gross (born 1947) and the journalist Aleksandra Pawlicka, recently published in St. Petersburg in Russian translation. The conversations deal with the historian’s own story and how a book he wrote—Neighbors: The Destruction of the Jewish Community in Jedwabne, Poland—became a historical event itself, triggering a powerful public reaction. Jedwabne is a small town near Białystok, where in July 1941, the Poles slaughtered their Jewish neighbors. Publication of the book’s Polish edition, in 2000, caused an incredible outburst of indignation in Poland, supported by the majority’s firm belief that Gross had maliciously slandered the country and its people. The reviewer concludes: “There are almost no Jews left in today’s Poland. But the situation is that the Jews—and Gross succeeded in showing this clearly—are the thermometer that takes the temperature of Polish society. And, I’m afraid, not only of Polish society.”

Looking Through Russian Literary Magazines: Novels and Articles of Jewish Interest

Jewish Calendar of Significant Dates: July–August 2021

Bibliography: Fifty New Books