Hundreds of resources to help you teach yourself


Yiddish Books at the YIVO Library

5 Yiddish, Bookstores/Libraries, Museums/Cultural, Organizations, Classes/Conversation, Conferences/Lectures, Kids

The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research, right here in Chelsea in New York City, has the largest collection of Yiddish-language materials in the world! Founded in 1925 in Vilna, Poland, it relocated to New York City 15 years later. Its mission is “…

Schoenhof's Website Is a Window to the World

5 Arabic, Dutch, English, French, General, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish, Yiddish, Websites, Bookstores/Libraries, Kids

Founded in 1856, Schoenhof’s claims to have the “largest collection of foreign books in North America.” As a student at Harvard, I used to shop at their main store in Harvard Square for my language and literature course materials. I…

Home of the Goethe-Institut

5 German, Tests, Bookstores/Libraries, Museums/Cultural, Classes/Conversation

The mission of the Goethe-Institut is to “promote the study of German abroad and encourage international cultural exchange,” as well as “foster knowledge about Germany by providing information on its culture, society and politics.” There are events, exchange programs, classes,…

Inside Polonia Bookstore

4 Polish, Bookstores/Libraries

This Greenpoint bookstore has many books for native and fluent Polish speakers, as well as materials for Polish language learners. I went there looking for language books for beginners, and the employees were very helpful. There were indeed a…

Beautiful Books in Hebrew

5 Hebrew, Bookstores/Libraries

Sefer Israel is a publishing house and a supplier of Hebrew educational materials to schools. Their offerings include books, periodicals, Israeli music, films, and more. This is a wholesaler, not a street-level retail store, but the owner, Orly Farhi-Haley, …

Kinokuniya Storefront

5 Japanese, Bookstores/Libraries, Shopping, Kids

This enormous three-level Japanese bookstore is centrally located in the middle of Manhattan. Kinokuniya’s wares are not confined to books. The store also sells magazines. It sells comics (lots). It sells stationery. It sells gift items.  A café…

Dahesh Bookstore, Book-Lined and Welcoming

5 Arabic, Bookstores/Libraries

This is a bookstore and publishing company that I visited a couple of times back in 2009, when it was located at 57th Street and Broadway. At the time of this writing, Dahesh was in transit to a new location, so…

4-5 Greek, Bookstores/Libraries, Shopping, Kids

The Greek Music & Video Superstore in Astoria has a lot more than just Greek music and videos. They have Greek religious objects, Greek books for children, Greek flashcards, clothing with Greek on it, and more!

Learn Portuguese, Read Portuguese

5 Portuguese, Websites, Bookstores/Libraries, Kids

The tagline for Atlantico Books is “Brazil and Portugal Delivered.” I have never met the owner, Elena Como, but she has been pleasant and responsive in my e-mail communications with her, and she is clearly very passionate about Portuguese. …