Marvin Zuckerman was born and raised in the Bronx, N.Y. to working-class,
Yiddis-speaking immigrants from Poland. Both his parents were active from
an early age in the Jewish Labor Bund in Warsaw and later, in New York.
Zuckerman grew up in the Amalgamated Clothing Workers Cooperative
Housing development in the Bronx. Speaking only Yiddish as a child, he
attended from age five to fifteen, a daily, after-school, Yiddish, secular,
socialist-oriented folk-school (Workmen’s Circle) where he learned to read
and write standard Yiddish, was schooled in Yiddish literature and folksong,
and in Jewish history and holidays.
After earning his university degrees, he became professor of English at Los
Angeles Valley College, serving as Chair of the English Department for 14
years and Dean of Academic Affairs for six years, retiring in 2002.
He has published seven books, two of them English college textbooks, and
five of them in the field of Yiddish, as well as various articles in journals and
periodicals. In his retirement, Zuckerman served as the representative of the
Administrators’ Association (Teamsters Local 911) to the Los Angeles
Community College District’s Board of Trustees, and as creator and
administrator of various academic projects for the Los Angeles Valley
College’s Job Training Program.
Bernie Sanders’ socialist vision is alive and well in European countries. It could flourish in the United States as well.
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