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Schwarzman, Asher

SCHWARZMAN, ASHER

SCHWARZMAN, ASHER (1890–1919), Yiddish poet. Born in Vilnia, Ukraine, Schwarzman grew up in a rural environment in Kiev province, and early came under the influence of *Bialik, who was a family friend. He composed youthful poems in Hebrew, Russian, Ukrainian, and Yiddish. From 1911 he served in the Russian cavalry. Although he was subjected to humiliations because of his Jewish origin, he was decorated for bravery during World War i and was wounded in action at the front. After the war, he lived in Kiev and participated in the publications of the Kiev Group of Yiddish Communist writers. He was closely connected with his cousin D. *Hofstein, who later edited his poems. After the Kiev pogrom of August 1919, Schwarzman enlisted to fight the counterrevolutionary bands and was killed in battle, leaving a legacy of hardly more than 60 poems, all of very high quality. His heroic death lent an aura to his personality and gave rise to lyric tributes by D. Hofstein, L. *Kvitko, I. *Fefer, A. *Vergelis, A. *Kushnirov, E. *Fininberg and M. Khashtshevatski, his biographer. His Liderun Briv ("Poems and Letters," 1935) includes a bibliography.

bibliography:

Rejzen, Leksikon, 4, 529–31; S. Tenenbaum, Shnit fun Mayn Feld (1949), 439–43; N. Meisel, Noente un Eygene (1957), 208–23; Sh. Niger, Yidishe Shrayber in Sovet-Rusland (1958), 16–30; Osher Shvartsman, Gevidmet dem 20 Yortog fun Zayn Heldishn Toyt (1940). add. bibliography: Bal-Makhshoves, Dos Dorem-Yidntum un di Yidishe Literatur in xix Yorhundert (1922), 54–57; M. Khashtshevatski, Osher Shvartsman, Zayn Lebn un Shafn (1940); lnyl, 8 (1981), 578–80.

[Sol Liptzin]

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