Yiddish Women Writers in Translation

Mondays 8.00–9.30pm
Thursdays 10.30am–12.00pm
From: 26 April 2021
To: 28 June 2021
Hinde Ena Burstin

This nine-week Zoom course, led by Hinde Ena Burstin, will introduce the translated work of classical, recently recovered and contemporary Yiddish women writers, including poetry, fiction and memoir. The course will run in two streams: Mondays from 8.00–9.30pm and Thursdays from 10.30am–12.00pm. You will enrol in one stream and attend at the same time each week.

Yiddish literature differs from other literatures in that it was initially targeted to women. Women have played a decisive role in the development of Yiddish literature, both as readers and as writers. Women have also been at the forefront of many innovations in Yiddish literature. This course will explore some of these innovations, and the circumstances and experiences that some Jewish women face, as reflected in their writing.

Through studying these translated works, we will explore the changing status and roles of women in Jewish life and literature, and the perspectives and experiences of women who stepped outside the norms.

Classes will be conducted in English. All materials will be studied in English translation, with poems also presented in Yiddish. All materials will be provided in English translation, with source texts in Yiddish available on request. No prior knowledge of Yiddish or Jewish culture is required.

Facilitator: Hinde Ena Burstin is a Yiddish scholar specialising in Yiddish women’s literature. She is an award-winning Yiddish poetry translator, and an internationally published and performed Yiddish and bilingual writer. She has designed and taught in Yiddish and Yiddish literature courses in Melbourne, Sydney and New York, and has given guest lectures on Yiddish literature in New York, Baltimore, Los Angeles, Montreal, Paris, Brussels and Cape Town, as well as in Sydney and Melbourne.

Please note, there will be no session on Monday 14 June due to the Queen’s Birthday public holiday in Victoria.

The Zoom link will be emailed to attendees directly ahead of the first session.

Image: Portrait of students in a schoolroom, c.1920s, YIVO Institute for Jewish Research


Museum members: $189
Non-Members: $216
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