International Confrence

The Avant-Garde in Yiddish Culture

The 100th Anniversary of Khalyastre

Bar-Ilan University

June 14-15, 2022

Bar-Ilan University Campus

The Leslie and Susan Gonda (Goldschmied) Nanotechnology Triplex Auditorium (Building 206)


Tuesday, June 14, 2022






Session 1: Yiddish Avant-Garde: Art and Theater

Chair: Ilia Rodov (Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan)


A Swan Song for the Jewish Avant-Garde: Chagall’s Illustrations for the journal Khalyastre, 1922-24

Mirjam Rajner (Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan)


Aleksei Granowsky and the Avant-Garde in Yiddish Theater (in Yiddish)

אלעקסיי גראַנאָווסקי און דער אַוואַנגאַרד אינעם ייִדישן טעאַטער

Leonid Roitman (Beth Shalom Aleichem, Tel Aviv)


Avant-Garde in Boxes: Yiddish Treasure Troves at The Israel Goor Theatre Archives and Museum

Leah Gilula (The Israel Goor Theatre Archives and Museum, Jerusalem)


Coffee Break



Session 2: Avant-Garde and Yiddish Poetry (part 1)

Chair: Haim Weiss (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Be’er Sheva)


Dovid Hofshteyn and his ‘Brothers’: Poetry, Belonging and Fraternity

Sabine Koller (Regensburg University)


Ascending to Hell: The Poetics of Deconstruction in Platonov and Markish

Elaine Wilson (Columbia University, New York)


The Sun in Yellow Streets: Devorah Fogel’s Avant-Garde Yiddish Poetry in a Jewish Transnational Context

Yael Levi (Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan)



Reception and Formal Opening Session



Prof. Shmuel Refael, Dean, Faculty of Jewish Studies, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan


Dr. Vered Tohar, Head of the Department of Literature of the Jewish People, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan


Prof. Haim Weiss, Head of the Department of Hebrew Literature, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Be’er Sheva


Keynote Lecture

The Voices of Yiddish Modernism

David Roskies (Jewish Theological Seminary, New York)




Wednesday, 15 June 2022



Session 3: Yiddish Avant-Garde – Linguistic and Thematical Aspects

Chair: Yaakov Herskovitz (The Hebrew University of Jerusalem)


Revisioning the Modernism: Avant-Garde Responses to Pogroms and Revolution, 1910-1925

Efraim Sicher (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva)


Smuggling the Goles: Peripheralities of Language and Location in Oyzer Varshavski’s Shmuglars

Marc Caplan (Heinrich Heine University, Düsseldorf)


Khalyastre Poets and their Lexical Contribution to the Yiddish Vocabulary (in Yiddish)

לעקסישע באַזונדערקייט און אייגנאַרטיקייט פֿון "כאַליאַסטרעס" יצירות, זייער צושטײַער אינעם ייִדישן ווערטער־אוצר

Shlomo Groman (Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan)


Coffee Break


11:30 – 12:30

Session 4: Yiddish Avant-Garde in the Russian and Soviet Context

Chair: Rafi Tsirkin-Sadan (Open University, Ra’anana)



The Rise of Yiddish Before the Kulturlige: Yiddish in Russian-Jewish Philanthropic Organizations from 1905-1917

Brian Horowitz (Tulane University, New Orleans)


The Desire for Cohesion among the Soviet-Yiddish Avant-Garde

Noa Tsaushu (Columbia University, New York)


Lunch Break


14:00 – 15:30

Session 5: Avant-Garde and Yiddish Poetry (part 2)

Chair: Claudia Rosenzweig (Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan)


“I Sliced it from my Soul like a Living Organ”: Uri Zvi Greenberg's Transition from Bilingualism to Writing Exclusively in Hebrew

Neta Dan (Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts, Tel Aviv)


A Comparative Study of the Poems Mefisto by U.Z. Grinberg and The Waste Land by T.S. Eliot

Chanita Goodblatt (Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Be’er Sheva) and Tamar Wolf-Monzon (Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan)



From the Battlefield to the Slaughterhouse: Melech Ravitch´s Vegetarian Evangelium (1921) as a Draft for the New Yiddish Poetic

Irad Ben Isaak (Selma Stern Center for Jewish Studies Berlin-Brandenburg, European University Viadrina in Frankfurt – Oder)



Closing Session



Prof. Giddon Ticotsky, Head of the Program of Yiddish Language, Literature, and Culture, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem


Closing Lecture

Frightful and Fruitful – 1918-1952 – From Avant-Garde to Social Realism and Martyrdom (in Yiddish)

צווישן ברכה און בראָך: ייִדישע שרײַבער אויף "רוסישער ערד" – פֿון רעוואָלוציאָנערן אַוואַנגאַרד און מאָדערניזם צו קריטישן רעאַלזם און סאָצרעאַליזם ביז צו קידוש־האומה־והלשון

Dov-Ber Kerler (Indiana University, Bloomington)



Nati Cohen, Department of Literature of the Jewish People, The Rena Costa Center for Yiddish Studies, Bar-Ilan University

Roy Greenwald, Department of Hebrew Literature, The Center for Yiddish Culture, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev



Report from a Conference: “The Avant-Garde in Yiddish Culture: The 100th Anniversary of Khalyastre”, June 14-15, 2022

Noa Tsaushu











The Yosef and Nachum Berman Department of Jewish Literature

The Rina Costa Center for Yiddish Studies

2019-2020 Academic Year Opening Day Ceremony

Solo Performance: “My Father’s Daughter”— Bella Bricks-Klein

Monday, 27 Marcheshvan 5780, November 25, 2019 at 12 pm

In the Beck Auditorium (Jewish Studies Building 410)

A glimpse in the inner world of a 2nd generation daughter of the Shoah, who was raised as a daughter of a Yiddish writer. Personal stories in Hebrew from the home of resilience, optimism, and hope—interspersed with cherished Yiddish songs.

Written by Bella Bricks-Klein

Arrangements and directing by Dori Engel


2019 Holocaust Memorial Day