Lily Edelman

Lily Edelman made great contributions to multiculturalism and Jewish education through her writing and teaching. Edelman earned an MA from Columbia in 1938, the same year she published her first book, Mexican Mural Painters and Their Influence in the United States, followed by Music in China and Japan: Classroom Material in 1940 and The People of India, Who They Are, How They Live, What They Like, and What They Are Thinking in 1943. Her passion for multiculturalism led to her work as education director of the East & West Association (founded by Pearl S. Buck) from 1941–1950. She published a number of children’s books throughout the 1950s, including Japan in Stories and Pictures and Hawaii, USA, but her main work in this period was with adult education as executive secretary for the National Academy for Adult Jewish Studies in 1953. She joined B’nai B’rith in 1957, where she served variously as director of adult education, national program director, and director of the lecture bureau. She edited the Anti-Defamation League bulletin Face to Face and their book by the same name, and helped Elie Wiesel translate A Beggar in Jerusalem and One Generation After from French into English.


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Date of Birth

San Francisco, CA
United States

Date of Death

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Lily Edelman." (Viewed on September 19, 2019) <>.


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