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A. M. Klein (Abraham Moses Klein) Biography

(1909–74), (Abraham Moses Klein), Hath Not a Jew …, Poems, The Hitleriad, The Rocking Chair

Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Patrick Kavanagh Biography to Knocknarea Sligo

Canadian poet, born in the Ukraine and taken to Montreal in 1910, educated at McGill University and the Université de Montreal. Klein practised at the Bar from 1933 until 1954. His writings explore Jewish culture from a rich Canadian perspective with both learning and wit. Hath Not a Jew … (1940) explored issues relating to Palestine and to religious uncertainty, and was followed by Poems and The Hitleriad, both published in 1944. The latter was a highly satirical mock-epic, through which Klein intended to highlight the horror of Hitler's rise. The Rocking Chair (1948) drew on the French-Canadian background of Montreal and reflects his own sharp sense of a Canadian identity. The Second Scroll (1951) was inspired by a visit to Israel, and in ‘poetic novel’ form reflects both a literal and a spiritual odyssey in modern times. His short fiction was collected in Short Stories (1983). Always politically attuned, Klein's work encompasses a vision of Canada's relationship to a wider world.

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