Saving Yiddish Literature

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As a graduate student during the 1980s, Aaron Lansky embarked on an unusual mission. He set out to save the world’s Yiddish books. Scholars then thought that only 70,000 of these books remained in existence.

Rummaging through dumpsters, basements and nursing homes, Lansky ended up finding more than a million books. He went on to found the National Yiddish Book Center where those books now are being preserved, reprinted and read by new generations.

Hear about the place that houses what is now regarded as the literary legacy of millions of Jews who lived in Eastern Europe before the Holocaust.


Aaron Lansky, founder of the National Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, MA and author of “Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Book.”