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Jüdische Volksstimme

Pioneering Zionist newspaper of the Austrian Empire, published in Brno (Brünn), Moravia, from 1900 to 1934. Jüdische Volksstimme (Jewish People’s Voice) was founded by Max Hickl (1874–1924), who served as publisher and editor in chief until his death, with only a brief interruption from 1920 to 1922, when Arnold Steiner took his place. Jüdische Volksstimme began as a bimonthly in February 1900; it was issued three times a month from September 1907, and weekly from 1910.

After the death of Hickl, Jüdische Volksstimme was edited first by Hickl’s brother Siegmund, then by Hickl’s nephew, the historian of Czech Jewry Hugo Gold (1895–1974), and at the end by Steiner and others. Robert Stricker (1879–1944) and Berthold Feiwel (1875–1937), who both were Austrian Zionists, helped with editing in the newspaper’s early years.

The paper’s subtitle initially was Centralorgan der jüdischen Arbeiter und Handelsangestellten (Central Organ of Jewish Workers and Mercantile Employees) and at first it had a Labor Zionist tinge, with articles on the problems of the Jewish proletariat. The first issue included an ideological article by the pioneer of Labor Zionism Naḥman Syrkin. The subtitle, however, was soon dropped and Jüdische Volksstimme became General Zionist in its orientation, with many Zionists from the Austrian Empire participating over the years. Among the most prominent were Hugo Bergmann, Nathan Birnbaum, and Martin Buber. Yet the paper also gave a hearing to other parties, such as Israel Zangwill’s Jewish Territorial Organization and the Orthodox Agudas Yisroel. For Moravian Jewry it served as a general Jewish newspaper, with the literary section publishing Yiddish authors such as Y. L. Peretz and Dovid Pinski. An attempt in 1913 and 1914 to publish a Vienna edition was short-lived.

Jüdische Volksstimme ran into financial difficulties in the 1930s, and its publication schedule became irregular. Its last known issue was dated 19 September 1934.

Suggested Reading

Josef Fraenkel, ed., Robert Stricker (London, 1950), p. 78; Jüdische Volksstimme (15 March 1930), 30th anniversary issue.