Edwin Markham, Moved by Nazi Persecution of Jews, Wrote “cry for Brotherhood”

The death last night of Edwin Markham, at the age of 87, recalled today that one of the famous poet’s strongest poems was an outcry against anti-Jewish persecution by the Nazi Government.

Written in 1934, a year after Adolf Hitler became Chancellor, and released by the American Jewish Committee, the poem described the racial heritage of the Jews, compared the oppression of old with that in Nazi Germany and called for “a protest that will shake the ruler’s knee. . . till the happy hour when Justice shall unclothe her arm of power.” The poem was entitled: “A Cry for Brotherhood–A Protest Against Hitler’s Persecution of the Jews.”

Earlier, in 1930, stirred by the plight of the Jews in Eastern Europe and inspire by the Palestine upbuilding movement, he wrote a poem “Bread and Home,” which he dedicated to the Allied Jewish Campaign of that year.

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