The first edition of the “Folktales” by Isaac Leib Peretz illustrated with paintings of prominent Ukrainian artist Olexandr Roitburd was released under the auspices of Jewish Confederation of Ukraine.
“Folktales” is a unique monument of the Jewish and Ukrainian literature: a collection of ancient Jewish oral folklore in the presentation of a recognized classic, translated in the early twentieth century by the Ukrainian dissident Mykola Zerov.
Peretz is one of the authors who introduced universal motives, non-standard ideas and trends into the Jewish literature.
It was he who became the author of the first European poem in colloquial Yiddish — “Monish”. It had been widely thought before that the real Jewish literature could only be written in Hebrew.
Peretz organized educational courses for workers, opposed anti-Semitic insinuations and at the same time exposed the ugliness of any fanaticism.
Without being a supporter of the ideas of Hasidism and not locking himself in the folklore frames, Peretz used the Hasidic legends to creatively embody his ideas, finding moral beauty and greatness in the life and faith of the poor, uneducated and seemingly unremarkable people.
«In my opinion, this is one of the most beautiful projects of the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine. By combining such different authors, we have created a unique work, which, I hope, will be reprinted many more times» — said Boris Lozhkin, JCU President.