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Farband Moves to Meet Student Interest in Yiddish Language

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The Farband Labor Zionist Order voted today to enlarge its network of five day schools throughout the United States and Canada and, as an important element in Jewish culture, to meet the demands of increased interest in the Yiddish and Hebrew languages.

The actions were approved by 750 delegates and guests attending the 21st national convention of the order here. The new schools will be in addition to Farband day schools in Montreal, Winnipeg. Toronto, and the Bronx, N.Y., and afternoon schools in Detroit, Newark, Philadelphia and Los Angeles.

Noting the increased interest in the Yiddish language among college students, the convention also announced a joint Farband-B’nai B’rith Hillel Foundation program for furthering interest in Yiddish on university campuses. Leading poets, writers and lecturers will be made available for presentations on campuses, and Hillel Foundation libraries will be provided with basic works of literature both in the original and in translation. The program will be started with the new academic year.

Jacob Katzman, Farband general secretary, told the convention that “whether it is the influence of Isaac Bashevis Singer, or the haunting spectacle of ‘Fiddler on the Roof’ in the widest circles, including those of the university campus and some of our intellectuals, among the artists and performers, it has recently become ‘in’ to be Jewish, even to use Yiddish phrases.”

Nachum Shamir, Israel economic minister to the United States, told the convention today that the only way to settle the situation in the Middle East was to have the Arabs sit down and negotiate with Israel. He also said “never again will Syrian guns be put in the mountains in the heights of Golan” and added that Jerusalem was “non-negotiable.”

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