Born Dec. 8, 1912, in Kharkov; died Feb. 16, 1939, in Buchenwald. Austrian writer and journalist. His family emigrated from Russia in 1918.
Soyfer, a member of the Social Democratic Party, participated in the uprising of the Viennese workers against fascism in February 1934. He became a Communist. In 1938 he was sent to Dachau and then to Buchenwald. Before 1938 he published the collection Poetry and Reports. The treachery of Social Democratic leaders is portrayed in his novel This Is How a Party Died (1934–37, unfinished). The manuscript of the novel was destroyed by the Gestapo. Fragments were published in the illegal Communist newspaper Volksstimme. The Song of Dachau (1938), written in the concentration camp, is imbued with faith in victory over fascism. The collection From Paradise to the Ruin of the World (published in 1947) contains five plays in the genre of “small drama,” intended for workers’ theaters.
WORKSVom Paradies z.nm Weltuntergang. Berlin, 1962.
REFERENCESHermann, F., and J. Soyfer. Österreichische Volksstimme, Dec. 7, 1952, p. 11.
Steinmetz, S., and J. Soyfer. Weg und Ziel. Vienna, 1959, no. 2, pp. 149–56.
N. B. VESELOVSKAIA