Else Lasker-Schüler has always spoken to me and from her stem the majority of my research interests. This amazing poet was born in Elberfeld (now Wuppertal), Germany in 1869 and died in Jerusalem in April of 1945. Her background was Jewish, her language was German, and her artistic output knows no like. In order to fully understand the cultural and historical context of Lasker-Schüler's oeuvre, I have undertaken extensive study of late-19th through early-20th Germany, with a special focus on Jewish German culture, including its: arts, politics, history, literature, music, fashions, mores, etc.
Else Lasker-Schüler was and is fairly well known in Yiddish circles. Primarily through her friendship with Abraham Stencl, Lasker-Schüler was at least tangentially knowledgeable of developments in modern Yiddish literature. From this relationship sprang my second primary interest--the relationship between Yiddish and German modernism. The dominant understanding of the interaction between the two literatures is contingent upon a model where Yiddish writers read German, but German writers do not read Yiddish. I have found German translations of Yiddish modernist poems (with the Yiddish origin often unattributed) that upend this understanding.