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Peretz Smolenskin

Peretz Smolenskin (1840-1885) was born in Monastryrshchina, Russia, to a poor family burdened by misfortune. At age five, he witnessed his eldest brother being seized by the Czar's army. He never saw him again. His father, who was falsely accused of a crime, was a fugitive for over two years. He died when Peretz was eleven. A year later, Smolenskin left home to join an older brother at a yeshiva, where he remained for over five years. Introduced to the ideas of the Haskalah (Jewish Enlightenment) by his brother, he began to read secular books and to learn Russian. He was so persecuted for these practices that he fled to Hassidic centers, where he spent almost three years.
After wandering through southern Russia and the Crimea for a year, earning his keep by singing in choirs and preaching in synagogues, he reached Odessa in 1862. He remained there for five years, studying music and languages and earning his living as a Hebrew teacher. In 1867, while in Odessa, he published his first story. Smolenskin then traveled through Romania, Germany and Bohemia, and acquired Turkish nationality along the way.
In Vienna he founded a Hebrew journal, which became the most effective Hebrew literary platform for the later Haskalah movement and for the early stages of the nationalist movement. For almost 17 years, Smolenskin devoted himself to this monthly journal, which he published, edited and managed, in addition to serving as proofreader, distributor and one of its main contributors. He also devoted much time and energy to public affairs and, as one of the leading advocates of a Jewish return to Eretz Israel, he conducted negotiations with Laurence Oliphant to obtain support for Jewish settlement there. In 1883, he contracted  tuberculosis, but continued writing til the end of his life, finishing his last novel, The Inheritance, shortly before his death.            

Books Published in Hebrew            
The Joy of the Godless, Vienna, Ha-Shahar, 1872 [Simhat Hanef]  
A Donkey's Burial, Vienna, Ha-Shahar, 1873 [Kevurat Hamor]
Pride and Fall, Vienna, Ha-Shahar, 1874 [Ga'on Va-Shever]
The Reward of the Righteous, Vienna, Ha-Shahar, 1875 [Gemul Yesharim]            
The Wanderer in the Paths of Life, Vienna, Ha-Shahar, 1876 [Ha-To'eh Be-Darkei Ha-Hayim]            
The Inheritance, Vienna, Ha-Shahar, 1877-84 [Ha-Yerushah] Collected Works, Vilna, Katzenelbogen, 1901 [Col Sifrei Peretz Smolenskin]            
One Hundred Letters, Vilna, Katzenelbogen, 1905 [Meah Michtavim]            
The Reward, Vilna, Katzenelbogen, 1910 [Ha-Gemul]
Articles, Smolenskin Foundation, 1926 [Ma'amarim]
Selected Stories & Articles, Dvir, 1941 [Mivhar Sipurim Ve-Ma'amarim]            

Books in Translation
The Wanderer in the Paths of Life            
Yiddish: Warsaw, Sefer, 1927


Peretz Smolenskin

Books Published in Hebrew

Books in Translation

Congratulations to Zeruya Shalev and Shifra Horn for receiving the 2017 Adei Wizo Prize.

Ayelet Gundar-Goshen's "Waking Lions" is longlisted for the 2018 International Dublin Literary Award
Ayelet Gundar-Goshen's "Waking Lions" is longlisted for the 2018 International Dublin Literary Award! The books on the longlist are selected by 400 libraries worldwide. Titles are nominated on the basis of ‘high literary merit’ as determined by the nominating library.
The second edition of the Letters of Israel festival will take place in Paris from September 8 to 18, 2017
After the success of its first edition, the Lettres d'Israël festival is gaining momentum, with an enriched program: meetings, conversations, readings , Theater, major authors and discoveries. Zeruya Shalev, Orly Castel-bloom, Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, Iris Argaman, and many more will participate. Click here for the full program:
Call for application: Artists in Residence Programme in Austria. Please note the deadline: September 18th, 2017.
In co-operation with KulturKontakt Austria, the Austrian Federal Chancellery makes available 50 residencies to visual artists / art photographers / composers / video and media artists / writers / literary translators and arts and cultural educators in Vienna and Salzburg for the year 2018. For more details:
Yizhak Mayer: "Meet the Author" Event
Ambassador Yizhak Mayer, author of the moving book “Silent Letter” will hold a “meet the author” event in Netanya. For further info about the event: And for more details about the title click here:
ITHL director on Grossman's win
"Grossman winning is not only his own achievement, but the achievement of the Hebrew literature as a whole", - Nilli Cohen on the first Hebrew author to receive Man Booker International Prize. Click here for the full article in Hebrew.
Chana Bloch dies at 77
Chana Bloch, a revered poet and translator from Hebrew and Yiddish, has sadly passed away earlier this month. Among her many remarkable achievements is the wonderful translation of a collection of poems by Dahlia Ravikovitch​ (W. W. Norton & Company). Chana will be greatly missed.
Yitzchak Mayer's personal website goes live
English edition of Yitzchak Mayer's amazing "Silent Letter" is about to come out with Mosaic Press. Learn more about the author's incredible life story on his brand new website.
Dayan on feminism and writing
Following the release of "Transitions" in English, Yael Dayan talks to Lilith Magazine about her past aspirations and present pursuits. Click here to read the full interview.
Gundar-Goshen's Op-Ed for Time
To mark the US publication of "Waking Lions" Ayelet Gundar-Goshen talks about the refugee crisis, internal walls and people behind them in the op-ed for Time. Click here to read the article.
MHL - New webzine starting soon!