Joshua Fishman, American linguist who specialized in the sociology of language, language planning, bilingual education, and language and ethnicity has passed away. He died on March 1, 2015 at the age of 88 years old.
Till Date, Joshua Fishman cause of death is still unknown. He is survived by his wife, Gella Schweid-Fishman who is over 65 years old now and three sons, nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He is predeceased by his sister, the Yiddish poet Rukhl Fishman who died in 1984.
We learnt about his death through various condolence messages and tributes posted on social media.
Renowned Linguist/Sociologist Joshua Fishman passed away yesterday (1st March 2015). Sad news for the field.
— Dr Jonathan Kasstan (@JRKASSTAN) March 2, 2015
Fishman was born on July 18, 1926 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Jewish immigrants from Ukraine and Bessarabia. His father Aaron Fishman was a staunch Yiddishist who would ask the young Shikl every evening: “What did you do today for Yiddish?” At the age of four he began his Yiddish education in the Workmen’s Circle schools of Philadelphia. He would often accompany his father when he went knocking on the doors of nearby houses in an effort to convince Jewish neighbors to send their children to Yiddish afternoon schools. While a student at Olney High School in Philadelphia he also studied at the city’s Yiddish high school and ran the Peretz Youth Club, which published the first version of the youth-oriented Yiddish-language magazine Yugntruf, which is still published today.
In 1991, Fishman was honored by two Festschriften, publications to celebrate his 65th birthday, each filled with articles by colleagues that followed his interests. One was a three volume collection of articles concerned with his interests, edited by Garcia, Dow, and Marshall, the other a single volume edited by Cooper and Spolsky.
In 1999, Fishman received the Itzik Manger Prize for contributions to Yiddish letters.
In 2004, he was awarded the Linguapax Prize.
On September 10, 2006, Fishman was honored by a one-day symposium at the University of Pennsylvania, commemorating his 80th birthday. He died in the Bronx, New York, on March 1, 2015, at the age of 88.
In 1994 the Stanford University Libraries established the ‘Joshua A. Fishman and Gella Schweid Fishman Family Archives’ within their Special Collections Section. The archive contains drafts of subsequently published books and articles, course outlines, lectures given, professional correspondence, family correspondence, photographs, audio-tapes, video-tapes, and other materials pertaining to Fishman’s work.
Notwithstanding his bunch scholastic exercises as a teacher, creator and the manager of various insightful distributions, Fishman consistently stayed dynamic in the field of Yiddish Studies. In 1965 he distributed a spearheading work on Yiddish in America and in 1981 the monstrous 800-page assortment of academic articles in Yiddish and English on Yiddish sociolinguistics, “Never Say Die” showed up under his editorship. He composed a decades-in length section on sociolinguistics for the Yiddish-language diary Afn Shvel and distributed an enormous number of articles in the Forverts on minority dialects, the sociolinguistic province of Yiddish and bilingualism, and different points. Fishman, alongside his significant other Gella, likewise coordinated the Aaron and Sonia Fishman Foundation for Yiddish Culture which supports programs that instruct Yiddish to youngsters.