By Naomi Seidman
With remarkably unique formulations, Naomi Seidman examines the ways in which Hebrew, the Holy Tongue, and Yiddish, the vernacular language of Ashkenazic Jews, got here to symbolize the masculine and female faces, respectively, of Ashkenazic Jewish tradition. Her refined historical past is the 1st book-length exploration of the sexual politics underlying the "marriage" of Hebrew and Yiddish, and it has profound implications for knowing the centrality of language offerings and ideologies within the building of recent Jewish identification. Seidman really examines this sexual-linguistic procedure because it formed the paintings of 2 bilingual authors, S.Y. Abramovitsh, the "grand-father" of recent Hebrew and Yiddish literature; and Dvora Baron, the 1st glossy girl author in Hebrew (and a author in Yiddish as well). She additionally offers an research of the jobs that Hebrew "masculinity" and Yiddish "femininity" performed within the Hebrew-Yiddish language wars, the divorce that eventually ended the wedding among the languages.
Theorists have lengthy debated the position of father and mother within the child's dating to language. Seidman offers the Ashkenazic case as an illuminating instance of a society within which "mother tongue" and "father tongue" are basically differentiated. Her paintings speaks to special matters in modern scholarship, together with the psychoanalysis of language acquisition, the feminist critique of Zionism, and the nexus of women's reviews and Yiddish literary background.
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Additional info for A Marriage Made in Heaven: The Sexual Politics of Hebrew and Yiddish (Contraversions: Critical Studies in Jewish Literature, Culture, and Society)
The metaphorical depictions of Hebrew and Yiddish as two kinds of women provided journalists with a rich vocabulary for describing not Engendering Audiences I 35 only a writer's language choice but also the Hebrew-Yiddish language wars in general. Commentators made full use of these metaphors to describe the First Yiddish Language Conference, which was held in Tshernovits in 1908. " 42 Another delegate spoke of Yiddish as a wife (avoiding personifying Hebrew as a woman) and accused the Hebraists at the conference of being like a guest who advises his host that his wife is unsuitable for him.
L. Peretz's folkstimlikher roman" (Y. L Peretz's Popular Novel). The caption reads, The Missus (Hebrew) says, "Woe to me that I have lived this long! " Peretz: The poor old thing! .. It breaks the heart . . she says! . and meL .. My heart is breaking too ... nevertheless she's a noblewoman . but my child! love! a young heart . young blood-don't take notice ... it rages ... fire and flame ... torches! you are mine ... come! we will ride in the chariots of time ... we will spin gold and silver ...
Hebrew is too composed, too wealthy and established, too old and snobbish to be the object of anything other than a condescending pity. The cartoonist has some fun with Peretz's melodramatic protestations of love for his young girlfriend, but the readers arc nevertheless made to feel the force of Yiddish 's attractions. The cartoons, taken together, demonstrate Yiddish cartoonists' ability to deftly manipulate both varieties of linguistic "abandonment" to the advantage of Yiddish. The metaphorical depictions of Hebrew and Yiddish as two kinds of women provided journalists with a rich vocabulary for describing not Engendering Audiences I 35 only a writer's language choice but also the Hebrew-Yiddish language wars in general.
A Marriage Made in Heaven: The Sexual Politics of Hebrew and Yiddish (Contraversions: Critical Studies in Jewish Literature, Culture, and Society) by Naomi Seidman