Sholom Secunda’s If Not Higher is a musical dramatization of one of Isaac Leyb Peretz’s most famous short stories, “Oyb nit nokh hekher.” This story also forms. IF NOT HIGHER. And the Rebbe of Nemirov, every Friday morning early at Sliches-time, disappeared, melted into thin air! He was not to be. If Not Higher by I.L. Peretz. Taken from Jewish Short Stories from Eastern Europe and Beyond, a 10 CD set available from our store at.

Author: Shagrel Kern
Country: Cape Verde
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Health and Food
Published (Last): 27 November 2015
Pages: 28
PDF File Size: 20.64 Mb
ePub File Size: 7.53 Mb
ISBN: 675-7-41500-519-2
Downloads: 37976
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Dule

He was something else.

A Lingua Franca Everywhere: It takes place in the Polish town of Nemirov, where it pits a Hassidic rebbe and his devoted flock against a quintessential litvak lit.

The process of oral transmission of folklore, however, is complex. Iff the Rebbe answers again in the Little-Russian speech:. For modernizing or secular Jews, he believed that neither Hebrew nor Yiddish should be discarded. Weir, Simon Project Manager: Also, without jeopardy to their principles, even secular humanists could accept the possibility that—without the original catalyst of religious doctrine, sacred texts, and theological precursors—rational philosophy and scientific enquiry might not have arrived on their own at so hibher sophisticated a human value system.

Speaking Yiddish and Opening Doors 1 minute 34 seconds.

Now, the rabbi, the rabbi was A man of his time. It was followed by a performance in in Cleveland, with the Robert Shaw Chorale, and another in in Atlanta. On his way out the Rebbe steps aside into the kitchen, stoops, takes a hatchet from under a bed, puts it into his belt, and leaves the house. In Warsaw, where he lived periodically and then permanently after the loss of his law license, Peretz began to publish Hebrew poetry in a number of important literary periodicals and collections.

He repeated the third part when the fire had burnt itself out, and he shut the stove doors…. Yet he successfully opposed an effort by some to declare Yiddish, not Hebrew, the sole Jewish national language. He thought that a revitalized Jewish culture, reborn in part through its languages, would actually enable Jewry to hold its own alongside neighbor cultures in Europe.


Marlene Hait, raised in a Yiddish home by survivors of the Holocaust, speaks about I.

Once, however, there came a Lithuanian—and he laughed! And the rabbi lived in Nemirov A yawn of a shtetl, A speck.

If Not Higher by I.L. Peretz.

In the night, they say, He recalls. Apart from the material reduction in his living standards from his more comfortable situation as a lawyer, that new life also had its fringe benefits. For Peretz, Zionism was but one of the various Jewish political movements to which a fortified Jewish culture in its own languages could be a preferable alternative and better serve the Jewish future. I.l.pefetz has heard the groaning of the Nemirover Rebbe knows what sorrow for All-Israel, what distress of mind, found voice in every bt.

Rather, they should be preserved by Jews in tandem with Polish and Russian—or, by extension, with the particular languages of other countries of which Jews were a part. Serving the lowly, he celebrated his Maker, Offering his litany with joy. Has Peretz decided that knowledge produced by modern enquiry and traditional folk wisdom are not necessarily mutually exclusive? He walks on thirty or forty paces, and then he stops beside a small tree.

Determined in his conviction that Yiddish must forgo its provincial state, he insisted that it must become recognized as a universal and modern language of serious literature and discourse.

It was not until that he published his first prose.

If Not Higher, by I. L. Peretz –

Who for life and who for death; Who for good and who for ill. In one of the back streets he stops beside a poor, tumbledown little house, and taps at the window. Full Oral History Interview. Tensions Within Toronto’s Jewish Community 3 minutes 55 seconds. Despite his undiluted distaste for some of the narrowness and abuses embedded in Hassidism, notwithstanding his undiminished commitment to modernity and culture over uncritical religion, he had come by then to recognize that traditional Judaism including its Hassidic paths had given birth to unimpeachable and perpetually relevant moral and ethical values.


Like the expedition, that experience offered yet another array of sources for subject matter, characterizations, and psychological forays that found their way into his work. Sign up to receive a weekly email with a highlighted video clip: In a characteristically complex approach, he was able to separate these values from the religious dogma, for which he had no use, and from the systems of theological reliance and irrational faith that he believed modern Jewry must eventually relinquish.

Through his own voracious reading, he went on to familiarize himself with rational dimensions of Judaic philosophy and to become conversant in the classics of Western civilization and the Western canon extending to Polish literature —often in their original languages, in which he was both tutored and self-taught.

Original authorship of stories, just as original composition of tunes, can be accomplished initially in unwritten form. But while the month of Elul died in death, And the moon of Tishre ached to be born, There was yet hope— A glimmer— A chance To avert the severe decree.

If Not Higher, by I. L. Peretz

Please leave this field empty. Do you or someone you know have stories to share about the importance of Yiddish language and culture in your life?

Peretz went through a period of reassessment during which he appears to have revisited some of his assumptions about stubborn folkways and his attitudes toward folk wisdom, Hassidic sensibilities and values, some Hassidic leadership, and even Hassidism itself.

And so the Jews of Nemirov, As they had done since before they could remember, Rose in the night To entreat, to petition, To pray. A number of his stories and essays reflect that conviction.