From Plotzk to Boston (Large Print): An Immigrant's Story

Overview

Mary Antin's vivid description of all she and her dear ones went through, enables us to see almost with our own eyes how the invasion of America appears to the impecunious invader. It is thus "a human document" of considerable value, as well as a promissory note of future performance. The quick senses of the child, her keen powers of observation and introspection, her impressionability both to sensations and complex emotions-these are the very things out of which literature is made; the raw stuff of art. Her ...
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Overview

Mary Antin's vivid description of all she and her dear ones went through, enables us to see almost with our own eyes how the invasion of America appears to the impecunious invader. It is thus "a human document" of considerable value, as well as a promissory note of future performance. The quick senses of the child, her keen powers of observation and introspection, her impressionability both to sensations and complex emotions-these are the very things out of which literature is made; the raw stuff of art. Her capacity to handle English-after so short a residence in America-shows that she possesses also the instrument of expression. More fortunate than the poet of the Ghetto, Morris Rosenfeld, she will have at her command the most popular language in the world, and she has already produced in it passages of true literature, especially in her impressionistic rendering of the sea and the bustling phantasmagoria of travel.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781494275808
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Publication date: 11/25/2013
  • Pages: 64
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.13 (d)

Meet the Author

Mary Antin (June 13, 1881 - May 15, 1949) was an American author and immigration rights activist.

Born to Israel and Esther Weltman Antin, a Jewish family in Polotsk, Belarus, at that time part of Russia, she immigrated to the Boston area with her mother and siblings in 1894, moving from Chelsea to Ward 8 in Boston's South End, a notorious slum, as the venue of her father's store changed. She attended Girls' Latin School, now Boston Latin Academy, after finishing primary school. She married Amadeus William Grabau, a geologist, in 1901, and moved to New York City where she attended Teachers College of Columbia University and Barnard College. Antin is best known for her 1912 autobiography The Promised Land, which describes her public school education and assimilation into American culture, as well as life for Jews in Czarist Russia. After its publication, Antin lectured on her immigrant experience to many audiences across the country, and became a major supporter for Theodore Roosevelt and his Progressive Party.

During World War I, while she campaigned for the Allied cause, her husband's pro-German activities precipitated their separation and her physical breakdown. Amadeus was forced to leave his post at Columbia University to work in China, where he was one of the pioneers in Chinese geology. She was never physically strong enough to visit him there. During the war, Amadeus was interned by the Japanese and died shortly after his release in 1946. Mary died of cancer, May 15, 1949.

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