Yosl Mlotek

in Voices from Shanghai

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780226181660
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226181684 | DOI:
Yosl Mlotek

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter presents “The Lament of My Mother” (1941), a poem written by Yosl Mlotek either before he arrived in Shanghai or shortly after he reached China in the summer or early fall of 1941. The loneliness of the young man is palpable in the poem. But it is more than homesickness, longing for family and familiar places, that can be heard in the poem. There is also concern for loved ones with whom all contact was lost by 1941. To be sure, news from Poland trickled through to Shanghai; there was the English-language press and the Russian news service at the Soviet embassy. But this was not personal news. The Polish refugees, when they met one another, must have agonized over the fate of their loved ones.

Keywords: poem; Yosl Mlotek; Shanghai; loneliness; family; Poland; refugees; homesickness

Chapter.  793 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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