Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sholem Aleichem

Nothing beats reading Sholem Aleichem in the original, and I mean nothing. Has anyone ever read it in the original? Any thoughts? Let me know.


shoshi said...

Yep. I'm a German-speaker and I started learning hebrew by reading yiddish in the original. In our city library there was volume of Sholem Aleichem in the original, very beautiful print. I read stories like "Rabtschik dus yiddishe hintel" and others.

I was quite shocked how brutal the world he depicted was.

For example, there was one story about a handicapped child that sat all the day behind the oven, and no one in the family would speak with him, he would be treated like an animal.

Or a story about Pessach-cleaning from the perspective of a little boy, who was always chased away because he was in the way.

Or a story about a young bochur who goes to see a shidduch on pessach, and erev pessach is motzai shabbes, so he has to do the complicated "kiddush-havadala" and he tries to remember "kidalta wekidashta", and is rejected by the family because he is not able to do it...

Every time kiddush falls with havdalah, I think "kidalta we kidashta"...

Vashty said...

I'm not so good at Yiddish but I do love Sholem Aleichem in the original when I make the effort to read it. He's one of the great OTD writers, even the Tevye stories are satirical and are basically OTD stories of girls, as told by their skeptic father.
Lots of his contemporaries were also OTD writers, predecessors of Rabbi Pinky Shmeckelstein.