StarTribune: Professor Berman

Behind the scenes of Minnesota history, by way of the engaging life story of the state’s best-known and beloved political observer

Hy Berman was 23, recording Alka-Seltzer commercials for a Yiddish radio station in New York and preparing to become a high school social studies teacher in the late 1940s.

That licensure work included a speech exam that Berman flunked because he was deemed to possess too thick of a New York accent. That happens when you grow up speaking Yiddish in Depression-era Brooklyn — eldest son of left-wing Jewish immigrants from Poland.

 

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