web analytics
December 29, 2014 / 7 Tevet, 5775
 
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » Sections » Books »

Title: Outwitting History, The Amazing Adventure of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books


Title: Outwitting History, The Amazing Adventure of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books
Author: Aaron Lansky
Publisher: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, N.C.

 

 

This memoir, from the founder of the National Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, Massachusetts, relates Lansky’s experiences learning to speak and read Yiddish in college, only to discover that “his” new language was in danger of passing out of existence.


Most of the Yiddish speakers of his time were old people; mainly refugees from Nazi Europe, and when they were gone the language – and their libraries – would be gone. Some of the other Yiddish speakers are chassidic, and very unlikely to read novels and other texts in Yiddish that are not seforim, holy texts.


Lansky relates that almost as soon as he became competent in the language, he discovered to his horror, that many thousands of books of all kinds, on all subjects, were being thrown out and put in dumpsters in the name of “cleaning up” and modernizing. Even brand new books were being discarded, filling up landfills all over the landscape.


Aaron Lansky had an epiphany – he was going to rescue these abandoned libraries, most of which their proud possessors brought to America as their only link to the “alte heim” or as a rare asset that survived the Holocaust.


Of course we can expect this tale to be a mystery story full of surprises, a “cliff-hanger” with unexpected developments along the way. Certainly, it is a jolly, rollicking tale of unexpected consequences, such as frequent gustatory experiences along with almost every rescue. The proud possessors of the treasures that Lansky was rescuing from oblivion each made him or his many proxies, first sit and ess a bissel, before they could escape. Whether it was gefilte fish, chopped herring or bagels and lox, each contributor demanded the humanity of accommodated at the table, before their “children” would be taken from them.


Lansky and his cohorts learned the real “language” that was never part of the vocabulary or the grammar of Yiddish.


Lansky was quite successful and established a beautiful headquarters/warehouse/library in Eastern Massachusetts, where efforts are being made towards the dissemination of newly-printed books and magazines in his “adopted” language.


About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Title: Outwitting History, The Amazing Adventure of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Kerry, the one who is short in size and common sense, with Kerry, the one who is tall in size but short on common sense.
Abbas Bucks Kerry and Runs to the UN to Throw Obama under the Bus
Latest Sections Stories
Collecting-History-logo

An incredible child protégé and a world chess champion, Boris Spassky (1937- ), best known for his “Match of the Century” loss in Reykjavík to Fischer, will always be inexorably tied to the latter.

book-super-secret-diary

Who hasn’t experienced how hard it can be to fit in?

In our times, most of us when we pray, our minds are on something else-it is hard to focus all the time.

The participants discussed the rich Jewish-Hungarian heritage, including that two-thirds of the fourteen Hungarian Nobel Prize winners have Jewish origin.

Today’s smiles are in the merit of my friend and I made a conscious effort to smile throughout the day.

When someone with a fixed mindset has a negative interaction with a friend or loved one, he or she immediately projects that rejection onto him or herself saying: “I’m unlovable.”

How many potential shidduchim are not coming about because we, the mothers, are not allowing them to go through?

Is the Torah offering nechama by subtly hinting that death brings reunion with loved ones who preceded you?

She approached Holofernes and, with a sword concealed under her robe, severed his head.

Here are examples of games that need to be played by more than one person and an added bonus: they’re all Shabbos-friendly.

The incident was completely unforeseeable. The only term to describe the set of circumstances surrounding it is “freak occurrence.”

The first Chabad Center in Broward County, Chabad of South Broward, now runs nearly fifty programs and agencies. T

More Articles from Aharon Ben Anshel
book-disambiguation

While still a student in a small Midwest college she learns that her aunt in New York has passed away, resulting in her life turning topsy turvy.

book-alex's-wake

Goldsmith himself went on his own “voyage of discovery” to the places where his grandfather and uncle landed and were sent.

Green was an American volunteer in Israel’s 1948 War of Independence, but something happened In Israel that has haunted him ever since.

Witnessed by Theodore Herzl, who was a journalist for a Viennese newspaper covering the trial, the cause célèbre became the spark that eventually caused the rise of the State of Israel in modern times.

These eleven nursing home residents and their accompanying staff from the Connecticut nursing home could represent any of us or our own loved ones…

There are three kinds of travelers: there are tourists, there are businesspeople, and then there are historians like Ben G. Frank.

The last kind doesn’t simply go from here to there. They try to relive history and find the real meaning behind what they experience.

Behind “the news” there’s almost always a story that isn’t being reported, and certain kinds of phenomenon occur almost simultaneously all over the world in almost every era.

Whether this is a memoir or autobiography or whether this book was written as an article of regional diplomacy, King Abdullah does come across in this book as a quite sincere person making a valiant effort at regional diplomacy, who is trying to quell terrorism in the Mideast and raise the social and economic levels of his countrymen.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/title-outwitting-history-the-amazing-adventure-of-a-man-who-rescued-a-million-yiddish-books/2006/04/26/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: