“Incredible . . . Inspiring . . . Important.” —Library Journal, starred review
“A marvelous yarn, loaded with near-calamitous adventures and characters as memorable as Singer creations.” — The New York Post
“What began as a quixotic journey was also a picaresque romp, a detective story, a profound history lesson, and a poignant evocation of a bygone world.” — The Boston Globe
“Every now and again a book with near-universal appeal comes along: Outwitting History is just such a book.” — The Sunday Oregonian
As a twenty-three-year-old graduate student, Aaron Lansky set out to save the world’s abandoned Yiddish books before it was too late. Today, more than a million books later, he has accomplished what has been called “the greatest cultural rescue effort in Jewish history.” In Outwitting History, Lansky shares his adventures as well as the poignant and often laugh-out-loud stories he heard as he traveled the country collecting books. Introducing us to a dazzling array of writers, he shows us how an almost-lost culture is the bridge between the old world and the future—and how the written word can unite everyone who believes in the power of great literature.
A Library Journal Best Book
A Massachusetts Book Award Winner in Nonfiction
An ALA Notable Book
"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
In 1980, a twenty-three-year-old student named Aaron Lansky set out to rescue the world’s abandoned Yiddish books before it was too late. Twenty-five years and one and a half million books later, he’s still in the midst of a great adventure. Filled with poignant and often laugh-out-loud tales from Lansky’s travels across the country as he collected books from older Jewish immigrants—books their own children had no use for— Outwitting History also explores brilliant Yiddish writers and enables us to see how an almost-lost culture is the bridge between the Old World and the future.Book Description:
In 1980 an entire body of Jewish literature--the physical remnant of Yiddish culture--was on the verge of extinction. Precious volumes that had survived Hitler and Stalin were being passed down from older generations of Jewish immigrants to their non-Yiddish-speaking children only to be discarded or destroyed. So Aaron Lansky, just twenty-three, issued a worldwide appeal for unwanted Yiddish works.
Lansky's passion led him to travel from house to house collecting the books--and the stories of these Jewish refugees and the vibrant intellectual world they inhabited. He and a team of volunteers salvaged books from dusty attics, crumbling basements, demolition sites, and dumpsters. When they began, scholars thought that fewer than seventy thousand Yiddish books existed. So far 1.5 million volumes have been saved!
Filled with tender and sometimes hilarious stories, this is an inspirational account of a man who had a vision and made a difference. It is a collective love song to the brilliant Yiddish writers--from Mendele to Sholem Aleichem to I. B. Singer--whose lasting cultural relevance is evident on every page.
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description Algonquin Books, 2005. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Brand New, not a remainder. Bookseller Inventory # 1608230333
Book Description Algonquin Books, 2005. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Ships Fast! Satisfaction Guaranteed!. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000470447
Book Description Algonquin Books, 2005. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000141314
Book Description Algonquin Books, 2005. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: The man who spearheaded what has been called "the greatest cultural rescue effort in Jewish history" recounts his poignant, intrepid, and often riotous quest to safeguard a vanishing civilization. Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_1565125134
Book Description Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # I4-KNYL-QRR3
Book Description U.S.A.: Algonquin Books, 2005. Soft cover. Book Condition: New. No Jacket. 1st Edition. Language: eng. Bookseller Inventory # ABE-335342981041826477
Book Description Algonquin Books, 2005. Paperback. Book Condition: New. First Edition. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX1565125134
Book Description Workman Pub Co, 2005. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # KB-9781565125131
Book Description ALGONQUIN BOOKS OF CHAPEL HILL, 2005. PAP. Book Condition: New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days.THIS BOOK IS PRINTED ON DEMAND. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # IP-9781565125131
Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: New. This item is printed on demand. Item doesn't include CD/DVD. Bookseller Inventory # 901073