Rachel Katznelson

Benjamin Harshav

in Language in Time of Revolution

Published by University of California Press

Published in print August 1993 | ISBN: 9780520079588
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520912960 | DOI:
Rachel Katznelson

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Eretz-Israel resonates with the Hebrew language, and the Bible comes to life when one reads it here, but the distance between spiritual life and the spiritual life invested in Hebrew by previous generations is immense. The essential thing was that, even though Yiddish is a living language, the language of the people and of democracy, there is a trend of thought, which was revolutionary, that expresses itself in Hebrew; whereas Yiddish literature is ruled by narrow-mindedness, mostly inert and reactionary in our eyes and, at best, only a weak echo of what was revealed in Hebrew. The expression of revolutionary thought is simple, like the style of scientific formulas. Such is the expression of ethical imperatives, emerging from the most original thought that is most opposed to all the ways of life.

Keywords: Eretz-Israel; Hebrew; language; Bible; Yiddish; democracy; literature

Chapter.  6378 words. 

Subjects: Social and Cultural Anthropology

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