NEW YORK (Feb. 5)
A resurgence in the Yiddish language and an increased tempo in Jewish cultural activities has become “a national trend” in the United States, Joseph Mlotek, educational director of the Workmen’s Circle, told 800 guests attending the 49th annual dinner of the Workmen’s Circle, told 800 guests attending the 49th annual dinner of the Workmen’s Circle schools and high schools here tonight.
“There were those who were burying Jewish culture after World War II. There were those who said that, after the mass immigration to the United States had come to a halt in 1929, Yiddish was a language that, too, would die,” Mr. Mlotek told the guests. The dinner honored Metropolitan Opera star Richard Tucker, the Yiddish poet, Jacob Glatstein, and Prof. Irving Howe, for their “contributions to Jewish culture in the United States.”
“The fact of the matter is,” Mr. Mlotek said, “at this very moment, the Workmen’s Circle, a pioneer in Jewish education, has entered into an agreement with the 92nd Street YM-YWHA, Educational Alliance, and with Bronx House and the Bronx River ‘Y’ that is a carbon copy of agreements we have entered into and will continue to develop with Jewish centers throughout the United States, to furnish lecturers, artists, teachers and literary people who would, both in Yiddish and English, keep alive the flame of Jewish culture and Yiddish contributions to literature and the arts.
Mr. Mlotek said: “Despite those who have tried to bury Yiddish, it refuses to die or be buried. The measure is not alone the revival of Yiddish as a language, but the success of books on Yiddish themes and the musical, ‘Fiddler on the Roof,’ which comes from the works of the great Yiddish humorist, Sholem Aleichem.” He predicted that “the mid-20th Century will find that the Yiddish language and Jewish culture have survived the gas chambers, the liquidation of 6,000,000 Jews and all attempts to minimize its importance as a cultural conduit of the Jewish people.”