Aaron Lansky have been honored with a bronze medal. The Advertising Club of Western Massachusetts have awarded the Order of William Pynchon to Aaron J. Lansky, the founder and president of the National Yiddish Book Center in Amherst, USA.Over one and a half million Yiddish books saved.
The Lansky’s center has rescued more than 1½ million Yiddish books since Aaron Lansky founded the center in 1980 when he was just a 23-year-old graduate student. He had noticed that Yiddish books – that had survived the terror-regimes of the dictators Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin were being thrown away because the generation of readers who spoke and read Yiddish as an everyday language was fading away. When the Center began i 1980, scholars estimated there were only 70,000 Yiddish books still extant and recoverable.
“We’ve had lots of headlines running around the country about saving the books,” Lansky said. “But now our focus is bringing this literature alive for a whole new generation.”
Lansky’s National Yiddish Book Center have recently hosted a conference aimed at recruiting young Iddish-English translators. Lansky said he expected about 25 applicants but 98 people attended the seminar.
“The National Yiddish Book Center is just full of energetic young people,” Lansky said. “It’s wonderful.”
*The National Yiddish Book Center. http://www.yiddishbookcenter.org/
The Ad Club is a trade group of communications professionals in Western Massachusetts and Northern Connecticut. It established ‘the Order of William Pynchon’ in 1915 to honor residents of the region who have rendered distinguished public service. The award is named in honor of Springfield’s founder, William Pynchon. Recipients get a bronze medal with Pynchon’s likeness and inscribed with the quotation, “They honor us whom we honor.”