Outwitting History

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Outwitting History by Aaron Lansky is a book about Lansky and his book-saving adventures. At age 23 Lansky read that thousands of the few remaining Yiddish books in North America were being discarded by the children of the books' original Yiddish-speaking owners. The books meant nothing to many of those who had inherited them, as they had no knowledge of Yiddish. Thousands of volumes were thus being consigned to dumpsters and a whole literature was in danger of being lost. Lansky felt compelled to preserve the language, and issued a public appeal for unwanted Yiddish books. He received a very large number of responses and set out, with a team of volunteers, to retrieve and store the remaining Yiddish books.

Aaron Lansky's accomplishments[edit]

Today Aaron Lansky is the president of the Yiddish Book Center, which holds more than 1 million Yiddish books.[1] In 1985 he received a MacArthur Fellowship for his efforts in saving Yiddish books.

Outwitting History won the 2005 Massachusetts Book Award.[2]


  1. ^ Lansky, Aaron (2004). Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books. Chapel Hill, N.C.: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill. p. 289. ISBN 1-56512-429-4. 
  2. ^ "Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books A Reading and Discussion Guide" (PDF). The Massachusetts Center for the Book. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 8, 2012. Retrieved April 28, 2015. 


  • Muse magazine March 2007 Volume 11, Number 3

See also[edit]

External links[edit]