Markish, Perets Davidovich
Born Nov. 25 (Dec. 7), 1895, in the village of Polonnoe, present-day Vladimirets Raion, Rovno Oblast; died Aug. 12, 1952. Soviet Jewish writer. Member of the CPSU (1942).
Markish began working when he was eight years old. However, he continued his studies on his own and attended Shaniavskii People’s University. His first works were published in 1917. Markish viewed the October Revolution of 1917 as a renaissance of the personality, sentiments that he expressed in the poetry collections The Rapids, The Restless Man, and The Prank, all published in 1919. The poem The Heap (1922), which describes the Jewish pogrom perpetrated by the Petliura gang in Gorodishche, expresses anxiety and sorrow.
In 1921 Markish went abroad; he returned to the USSR in 1926. His epic poems The Brothers (1929), Don’t Lose Heart (1931), The Thistle (1935), and Dawn Over the Dnieper (1937) reflect the most significant events of the Soviet era and the radical changes in the life of the Jewish people. The poem The War (1941-48) is devoted to the Great Patriotic War of 1941-45. Markish is the author of the novels From Century to Century (vols. 1-2, 1929-41), Face to Face (1934), and The Stride of the Generation (1948, published 1966). His best-known plays are Earth (staged 1930), The Ovadis Family (staged 1937; Russian translation, 1938), and Uprising in the Ghetto (staged 1946).
WORKSGezamelte werk, vols. 1, 2, 6. Moscow 1933-36.
In Russian translation:
Stikhotvoreniia i poemy. Moscow, 1945.
Izbrannoe. Introductory article by B. Lavrenev. Moscow, 1957.
Izbr. proizv. vols. 1-2. Foreword by G. Remenik. Moscow, 1960.
Stikhi. Moscow, 1968.
Stikhotvoreniia i poemy. Introductory article by S. Narovchatov. Leningrad, 1969.