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Junosza, Klemens°


JUNOSZA, KLEMENS ° (pseudonym of Klemens Szaniawski ; 1849–1898), Polish author. Junosza, who was born in Lublin, translated from Yiddish *Mendele Mokher Seforim's Masoes Binyomin Hashlishi, published as Don Kiszot żydowski ("A Jewish Don Quixote," 1885), as well as *Shalom Aleichem's Briv fun Menakhem-Mendl (Miljony) and a few short stories by I.L. *Peretz. Several of Junosza's original writings describe Polish-Jewish life, notably "Lłaciarz" ("A Patcher," i.e., a tailor who only patches clothes, first published in Z mazurskiej ziemi ("From the Mazurian Land," 1884); Pająki ("Spiders," 1894); and Żywota i spraw lmć Pana Symchy Borucha Kaltkugla ksiąg pięrcioro ("Five Books on the Life and Affairs of His Highness Simḥah Baruch Kaltkugel," 1895). In Laciarz, Junosza showed sympathy for the Jewish poor, but in Pająki, he castigated Jews who exploited the Polish peasants. In many of his articles, and especially in his book Nasi Żydzi w miasteczkach i na wsiach ("Our Jews in Townlets and Villages," 1889), Junosza discussed the Jewish problem. He defended the Jews against antisemitic attacks but, at the same time, stressed that, because of their traditional education, the Jews were not prepared or fit for productive work. Driven by extreme poverty, they often turned to the exploitation of the peasants, to usury, smuggling, and other illegal activities. The remedy, in his view, was a change in the Jewish educational system, to hasten the productive employment and assimilation of Polish Jewry.


Rejzen, Leksikon, 3 (19283), 1268–70; T. Jeske-Choiński, Żyd w powieści polskiej (1914), 61–68; J. Kryżanowski, W kręgu wielkich realistów (1962), 243–6.

[Yehuda Arye Klausner]

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