The end of Yiddish, except as an academic pursuit or as a final nostalgia, is not at all Kafkaesque. Jewish history has many ironies and countless sorrows, as well as a panoply of cultural achievements too numerous for any single consciousness to absorb. Jewish cultural memory is tenacious, and will retain the masterpieces of Yiddish literature, from I.L. Peretz and Sholem Aleichem on to the major American Jewish poets: Moyshe-Leyb Halpern and Jacob Glatshteyn. Except for a handful of versions by John Hollander, the poets do not lend themselves to translation, but the prose fiction that culminates in Chaim Grade’s The Yeshiva has come through well enough. The vibrant Yiddish language, fused and open, questioning and celebrating, someday soon will be no more.

—Harold Bloom, “The Glories of Yiddish”  [4.17.2021]

The Hebraists think that Israeli is true Hebrew and will one day be spoken internationally by all Jews. The Yiddishists think their clubs, articles, conferences, and proclamations of love and devotion will “save Yiddish.” Meanwhile, the Hasidim, who have no interest in either position, are demographically making Yiddish a major Jewish language even in Israel, and the major Jewish language internationally. 

—Dovid Kotz, Words on Fire: The Unfinished Story of Yiddish   [4.17.2021]

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