Sara's Reviews > Words on Fire: The Unfinished Story of Yiddish

Words on Fire by Dovid Katz
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's review
Jun 28, 2007

liked it
Recommended for: anyone who wants to know more about Yiddish

that's a great read if you want to find out about Yiddish and you're not a full-blood academic. Badly referenced but Katz knows what he's talking about

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message 1: by Francis (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:25AM) (new)

Francis I liked the book -- it was very interesting -- but there was frustratingly little about Yiddish *as a language*.

I have very little sense of how the language developed and the linguistic processes that affected it, or even what it is like.

Maybe Katz is trying to appeal to the general reader and I am the wrong person to be reading it. It does win for me as giving a much better sociolinguistic context for Yiddish than most "history of language X" books do.

I surmise that it is inherent in the subject matter that such a context requires a prominence of treatment, but nevertheless I felt the lack of more substance about Yiddish itself.

Its like reading a "life of Napoleon" without any description of the man himself.

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