Orion's Reviews > Outwitting History: The Amazing Adventures of a Man Who Rescued a Million Yiddish Books

Outwitting History by Aaron Lansky
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's review
Jun 14, 2010

it was amazing
Read from May 20 to June 14, 2010

This is the story of the creation of the National Yiddish Book Center in Amherst Mass., but it is also the story of the passing of a whole generation of Yiddish speakers, writers and readers and the culture embodied in that language. The story is told in a series of meetings with people who donate their Yiddish books to the Center. In each tale the meaning of the books to the owners and their cultural importance are conveyed in a moving way that made the book hard to put down and I was sad when it ended.
As a librarian in a time when the future of all print books is in question, I found this story very timely. What will the next generation do with the large personal book collections of their parents and grandparents when all their information is online? Will they say "Google must have scanned these years ago" and recycle the paper they were printed on?

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