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Would a Jewish University in Poland Help?

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The Yiddish daily “Unser Express” publishes a letter signed by a certain Markus Levinsohn, suggesting that in order to fight the anti-Jewish student agitation, the Jews should launch a movement to establish a Jewish University in Poland. How long must our youth be unwanted guests in the Universities of our fatherland, he asks, or strangers in a foreign land to obtain their education? It might be possible for representative Jews to influence the Jewish millionaires to help to endow Jewish colleges which will bear their names.

There are too many difficulties in the way of realising such a project, the editor points out in a footnote to the letter. The idea has been brought up many times before by a number of Jewish social workers, but nothing has happened. Besides, how will a Jewish University be safe from the attacks of antisemitic hooligans? They can organise a pogrom against a Jewish University just as easily as against Jewish shops or houses.

So long as we Jews do not possess complete political rights, the editor proceeds, there is no way of carrying such a scheme into effect. We are not able at present to open even a Jewish secondary school with Yiddish as the language of instruction, so it is absurd to talk about a Jewish University.

If we are asked what our students should do, our answer is very simple So long as the entire Jewish people suffers, they, too must suffer. The fact is that we have very much bigger troubles to contend with now than to provide higher education for small groups of assimilated students. A University is a big problem. The Zionist movement, with its many adherents and contributors, started the Hebrew University, and it is still very far from being a real teaching University. It is very unlikely that our Jewish millionaires will agree to give their millions for the endowment of a Jewish University.

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