Gottlieb, František

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GOTTLIEB, FRANTIŠEK (1903–1974), Czech poet and author. Born in Klatovy, Bohemia, Gottlieb studied law and was influenced by Otokar *Fischer at Charles University in Prague. He was an active Zionist in his youth, and made Jewish nationalism the ideological basis of his first book of poetry, Cesta do Kanaán (The Way to Canaan, 1924), and of his earliest novel, Životy Jiřího Kahna (The Lives of George Kahn, 1930, 19472) a tragic story of the son of a Jewish merchant. In 1939, he emigrated to Palestine, but during World War ii joined the Czechoslovak army in the Middle East. After the war, he returned to Prague, where he entered the Czechoslovak Foreign Ministry. His impressions of wartime Palestine are embodied in a volume of poems, Dvojí nástup (Double Ascent, 1942, 19462), and in two books of short sketches, Čelem proti čelu (Head On, 1947) and Jaro a poušt' (Spring and Desert, 1956, 19622). Eventually, he published a drama, Golem (1965), about Rabbi *Loew, in 1966 a volume of poems, Rozpjatý den (An Extended Day), and a short story, "Z okna do okna" ("From Window to Window," 1973), a sorrowful tale of a Jewish family. Gottlieb was not deterred from dealing with Jewish themes after the Communist coup of 1948.


O. Donath, Židé a židovství v české literatuře 19. a 20. století, 2 (1930), index; J. Kunc, Slovnik českých spisovatelů beletristů 194556 (1957); R. Iltis, in: Jewish Quarterly, 13 (Summer 1965), 11. add. bibliography: Lexikon české literatury 1 (1985); A. Mikulášek et al., Literatura s hvězdou Davidovou, vol. 1 (1998).

[Avigdor Dagan /

Milos Pojar (2nd ed.)]