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(pseudonym of Avrom Rozin; 1878–1942), socialist leader. A leading figure first in the Jewish Socialist Workers Party (known as SERP, the party’s initials in Russian, or the Sejmists in Yiddish usage), later in the United Jewish Socialist Workers Party (Fareynikte), and ultimately in the territorialist grouping known as the Freeland League (Frayland-lige), Rozin was born in Krucha (Mohilev province; now in Belarus), in the Russian Empire, and received a traditional education. He affiliated with illegal socialist circles in Minsk in the mid-1890s and studied in Paris at the beginning of the twentieth century.

Rozin participated actively in the conference held in Kiev in 1903 that resulted in the creation of the Jewish socialist periodical Vozrozhdenie (which believed that Jewish communities in the Diaspora could flourish under the right circumstances, advocated national political autonomy for Russian Jewry, and was committed in principle to the territorial concentration of the Jewish people). He served as an editor of Vozrozhdenie and published articles of his own in it on Bundism and on Zionism. In 1906, he participated in a second conference in Kiev that resulted in the formation of SERP, which differentiated itself from the Bund by its openness to a social revolutionary understanding of socialism rather than a commitment to Marxism and by its support for political rather than cultural autonomy. SERP also distinguished itself from the Zionist Socialist Party by soft-pedaling the significance of territorial concentration.

Rozin became an editor of SERP’s Russian and Yiddish organs and a member of its Central Committee. When, in 1917, SERP merged with the Zionist Socialist Party to form Fareynikte, Rozin served on the new party’s Central Committee, was a member of the editorial collective of Fareynikte’s daily, Di naye tsayt, and served as editor of another periodical issued by that party, Der yidisher proletarier. Rozin left the Fareynikte, however, when, in 1919, its Ukrainian component took a pro–Communist Party stance.

Rozin left the Soviet Union in 1921, ultimately settling in Berlin, where he edited Dos fraye vort, an “organ of independent socialist thought” that opposed policies of the Evsektsiia. In the 1930s, he was involved with efforts to issue the Algemenye entsiklopedie, first in Berlin and later in Paris. He was one of the creators of the Frayland-lige in 1935, and, after fleeing to the United States in 1940, founded and edited Afn shvel, which was published by the Frayland-lige in New York City and which was committed to territorialism.

Suggested Reading

Gregor (Grigori) Aronson, Rusish-yidishe inteligents (Buenos Aires, 1962); Ben-Adir, “Tsum oyfkum fun der ‘yidisher sotsyalistisher arbeter-partey’ ‘(y.s)’,” in Sotsyalistisher teritoryalizm: Zikhroynes un materialn tsu der geshikhte fun di parteyen “s.s.,” “y.s.” un “fareynikte,” vol. 1, pp. 9–56 ((Paris), 1934); Yitskhok Kharlash, “Ben-Adir,” in Leksikon fun der nayer yidisher literatur, vol. 1, cols. 336–339 (New York, 1956); Zalman Rejzen, Leksikon fun der yidisher literatur, prese un filologye, vol. 1, cols. 310–316 (Vilna, 1926).

YIVO Archival Resources

RG 227, Alexander Mukdoni, Papers, 1918-1958; RG 315, H. (Halper) Leivick, Papers, ca. 1914-1959; RG 366, Isaac Nachman Steinberg, Papers, 1910s-1950s; RG 394, Ben-Adir, Papers, ca. 1934-1942.