Yunge, Di

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YUNGE, DI ("The Young Ones"), American-Yiddish literary movement. Di Yunge was formed (1907) of young immigrant writers who professed themselves literary orphans and sought to create a new path in Yiddish literature. Eschewing the efforts of *Sweatshop Poetry, which preceded them on the literary scene, Di Yunge advocated literature as the communication of impressions rather than concepts and called for the creation of art for its own sake, the highlighting of the voice of the individual, the maintenance of stillness and silence in literature, and a stress on shtimung ("mood"), while aiming to emancipate Yiddish literature from didactic moralizing, sentimentality, and propagandizing. Di Yunge published their works in the existing Yiddish press, but also founded many of their own literary journals, including Yugnt ("Youth," 1907–8), Troymen un Virklekhkayt ("Dreams and Reality," 1909), Literatur (1910), Fun Mentsh tsu Mentsh ("From Person to Person," 1915), Ist Brodvey ("East Broadway," 1916), and, their most successful and sustained periodical, Shriftn ("Writings," 1912–26). In addition to publishing original fiction, poetry, and literary and social criticism, Di Yunge sought to enrich the canon of Yiddish literature through translations of masterpieces of foreign literature. Their most ambitious project was their eight volume Di Verk fun Haynrikh Hayne ("The Works of Heinrich Heine," 1918). Poets associated with this movement included Moshe Leib *Halpern, *Mani-Leib, Zishe *Landau, Reuben *Iceland, Moses *Nadir, Berl *Lapin, J.J. *Schwartz, Joel Slonim, M. *Bassin, and A.M. *Dillon. Novelists and short story writers included David *Ignatoff, Isaac *Raboy, Joseph *Opatoshu, and M.J. *Haimowitz. Writers who contributed to later phases of the movement included Menahem *Boraisha, Ephraim *Auerbach, B.J. *Bialostosky, A. *Nissenson, Naphtali *Gross, and Z. *Weinper, and H. *Leivick. The dominance of Di Yunge was not effectively challenged until the rise of *Inzikhizm after World War i.


A.A. Roback, Story of Yiddish Literature (1940), 258–73; R. Iceland, Fun Undzer Friling (1954); D. Ignatoff, Opgerisene Bleter (1957); B. Rivkin, Yidishe Dikhter in Amerike, 2 vols. (1947–59); S. Liptzin, Flowering of Yiddish Literature (1963), 206–35; A. Tabachnik, Dikhter un Dikhtung (1965); S. Liptzin, Maturing of Yiddish Literature (1970), 1–18. add. bibliography: R.R. Wisse, in: Jewish Social Studies 38 (1976), 265–76; idem, in: Prooftexts 1 (1981), 43–61; idem, A Little Love in Big Manhattan (1988).

[Sol Liptzin /

Marc Miller (2nd ed.)]