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Yaari, Yehudah


YAARI, YEHUDAH (1900–1982), Hebrew writer; brother of Abraham *Yaari. Born in Galicia, Yaari joined the Ha-Shomer ha-Ẓa'ir movement, and in 1920 emigrated to Palestine. He worked in Ruḥamah and Kiryat Anavim, as well as on the building of the Afulah-Nazareth highway. He became one of the founders of the first Ha-Shomer ha-Ẓa'ir kibbutz, eventually settling with the group in Bet Alfa. In 1926 he left the kibbutz and moved to Jerusalem, where he was employed at the National Library. He studied librarianship in New York (1928–30), and afterward took on a teaching post in Canada (1931–33). On his return to Palestine, he was appointed to a position in the head office of the Keren Hayesod, which he held until 1955. From 1955 to 1957 he was cultural attaché at the Israel Legation in Sweden and other Scandinavian countries. He served as director of the Department for Cultural Relations of the Foreign Ministry (1957–61) and as consul general in Amsterdam (1961–62). Yaari is one of the representative writers of the Third Aliyah, depicting the lives and struggles of those Jews who went to Ereẓ Israel after World War i. In his novels and stories he recreates the figures of the devoted young ḥalutzim who cleared the swamps of the Ḥuleh in the Galilee (as Yaari himself did). But his ties to Europe are still strong, and he contrasts the destruction of the *shtetl with the rise of the new settlement in Palestine. His publications include the novels Ka-Or Yahel (1932; When the Candle was Burning, 1947) Shoresh alei Mayim (1950), and several collections of short stories.


A. Kariv, Iyyunim (1950), 204–8; S. Kremer, Ḥillufei Mishmarot be-Sifrutenu (1959), 206–11; Y. Keshet, Maskiyyot (1954), 229–39; Sefer ha-Aliyah ha-Shelishit, 2 (1964), 882–92. add. bibliography: D. Sadan, "Bein ha-Mishpetayim," in: Karmelit, 11–12 (1966), 75–90; Sh. Kadari, in: Haẓofeh (Kislev 18, 1970); A. Lifschitz, "Havayatah shel Tekufah: Al Sippurav shel Y. Yaari," in: Yerushalayim, 7–8 (1973), 223–228; N. Govrin, "Al Yeẓirato shel Y. Yaari," in: Yedioth Aharonoth (December 25, 1980); D. Laor, "Beginning Anew," in: Modern Hebrew Literature, 8: 1–2 (1982/83), 33–40; G. Shaked, Ha-Sipporet ha-Ivrit, 2 (1983), 322–35.

[Getzel Kressel]

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