From the Temple Israel Library

March 2024

by Ann Cohen

     The Jewish Daily Forward more recently known as The Forward was the most renown American Yiddish newspaper of its time. Founded in 1897 by Abraham Cahan, it was the literary newspaper of note for millions of Jewish immigrants for 120 years. Its daily short stories and novellas, in addition to its advice column, a Bintel Brief, were a reflection of the assimilation plights encountered by the early 20th century immigrants.

     Have I Got A Story For You, edited by Ezra Glinter is a compilation of 42 of those short stories and novellas translated into English. Abraham Cahan, Morris Rosenfeld, B. Kovner, Sholem Asch, Isaac and Israel Singer, and Chiam Grade are just a few of the well-known fiction authors whose works appear here. Brief biographies of each author with commentaries on their themes precede each of their stories. Original publication dates of each piece are noted, and in many cases, help set the proper tone. All told, Have I Got A Story For You is an emotional psychological view of a century of the American Jewish experience seldom recorded elsewhere. Look for it along with our other books on the immigrant experience.

     As a footnote, after 1983, The Forward, still in Yiddish, was published on a weekly basis. Today, with a changed format and in English, it is available online only.