Jewish Observer
SCIENCE AND CULTURE
13/16
November 2001
5762 Kheshvan

BOOK FESTIVAL
OLEG KOZEROD
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The Community Festival of Jewish Book, which attracted the attention of wide public, was held in Kiev for the fourth time.

The development of not only Jewish, but also of the world culture is impossible without Jewish books. The Torah is the concentration of all spiritual values of the Jewish people and most important knowledge about its history and the way of life. Along with this there exists classic Jewish literature with its long and glorious history. Every year many books on Jewish topic are published.

The Community Festival of Jewish Book in Kiev is one of the biggest forums of librarians, Jewish publishers and book lovers. Such festivals are being held now in many cities of the CIS. New literature is presented, authors and readers exchange opinions about new books, participate in press conferences and disputes. In Jewish "Ofek" means "horizon". In our opinion this name rather precisely reflects the infinity of the Jewish book business development.

Festivals, held in Kiev, have one positive feature - each of them differs from others.

CFJB-2001 was dedicated to Jewish Kiev on the threshold of XIX-XX centuries. Pavel Fishel and Irina Klimova, who arranged the festival, managed to recreate the atmosphere of Jewish life of that epoch.

Guests had a possibility to see the life of a Jewish attorney family of the beginning of the XX century and portraits of famous Kiev Jewish patrons of art. Collections of family photos and pictures of all functioning Kiev synagogues of that time were also exhibited at the festival. As if with a wave of the hand the community center "Sunflower" turned into one of Kiev streets with a synagogue, an old tram and houses. The public was pleased to hear Felix Kandel, historian and literator, whose novels and stories are known in many countries of the world. The festival included the presentation of such books as "Purimshpili" by Moisey Beregovsky, "Phonoarchive of Jewish Musical Heritage" by Ludmila Sholokhova, and the eighth issue of the "Egupets" almanac. The three-day festival successfully ended in a bright and effective performance of the "Klezmerbend" troupe from Kharkov.

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