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Bergelson David Rafailovich
(18841952)

Prose writer, playwright, publicist. He began to publish in Yiddish in 1919. In 1918 he was active in Kultur-Liga. He was influenced by experiments in the use of the Hebrew language and its literature. In 1921 he emigrated, living in Germany, France and the USA; he returned to the USSR in 1929. He was the author of a series of novels about Jewish life in Ukraine at the beginning of the 20th century. In the 1930s and 1940s he was among the most prominent Jewish writers in the USSR. He made several visits to Birobidzhan, where he enjoyed considerable fame and popularity: readers' circles in the region discussed his works, and his plays were put on in the theatre. During the Second World War he was a member of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee. He was arrested in 1949 and executed in 1952.

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