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.


October 2004

This issue of the magazine includes:

• Names: Forgotten Writer Doyvber Levin

In the 1920s, the Russian writer Doyvber Levin (1904–1941) was a member of the famous Leningrad avant-garde literary group, OBERIU—together with his friends, poets Daniil Kharms, Aleksandr Vvedensky, Nikolay Zabolotsky and others. Most of other members of the group were arrested during the period of Stalin's repressions. Doyvber Levin became a children's writer. His children’s novels about life in Jewish shtetls of Byelorussia were very popular in the USSR in the 1930s. In December 1941, Levin was killed in the battles with German troops near Leningrad. His unpublished manuscripts of OBERIU period disappeared during the Leningrad Siege, and as a result, his name became unattractive for researchers of Russian avant-gardism who were interested mostly in uncensored literature. On the other hand, after the war, in the period of state anti-Semitism in the Soviet Union, Levin's children’s novels became “unsuitable” for republishing because of their Jewish content. As a result, the writer Doyvber Levin was forgotten by both official and unofficial Russian cultures. None of his texts were ever published after his death. At the same time, his books written in an interesting style are a masterful reflection of the cultural landscape, way of life and social structure of a Jewish shtetl.

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

Synopses: Two New Editions

Brief reviews present two books—both connected with Russian-Jewish authors who have emigrated from Russia to Germany. The first book was written by Mina Polyanskaya, editor of the Berlin-based Russian magazine “Zerkalo zagadok.” It is the first biography of the prominent writer Fridrikh Gorenshtein who recently passed away in Berlin. The second book is the novel New Golem by Oleg Yuriev, the poet and prose writer, originally from St. Petersburg, who has lived in Germany for 14 years already.

Jewish Calendar of Significant Dates: November–December 2004

Bibliography: 55 New Books