The German Centre for Accessible Reading, dzb lesen, makes literature accessible and offers it for loan and purchase. Whether you prefer crime novels or nonfiction, light or classic novels – we have books of all genres for your aha-moments, thrill, and enjoyable reading. The centre is not only a library, but first and foremost, it’s a production centre for braille and audio media, large print, tactile media, and even more in the future. We, thus, create new offers for the special reading needs of blind, visually impaired and print disabled people, i.e. anyone who cannot or not easily read ordinary print. We continually enhance these competences and also offer them as services and consultations – for solutions that enable reading for all and, thus, inclusion.
dzb lesen’s library offers approximately 84.000 titles of all kinds for loan: Braille books, audio books and films as well as sheet music.
Blind, visually impaired, and print-disabled booklovers can register as users and freely browse dzb lesen’s library catalogues and find literature for their reading requirements.
Around 20,000 different titles in non-contracted and contracted braille as well as relief books and media with tactile images are available for loan.
Almost 7,000 sheet music titles and works on music theory in braille are available for loan.
Here, around 55,000 audio books in DAISY format and almost 2,000 audio film titles are on offer for loan.
The thematic collection comprises over 37,000 titles for interested sighted users.
The centre has only recently become entitled to provide services for people with dyslexia and people with physical disabilities who are unable to handle books. For them, we are developing more suitable offers, also in the fields of large print for visually impaired people, accessible eBooks and voice assistant systems.
Braille- and Music Library
Telefon: +49 (0) 341 7113-114 / 234
Telefon: +49 (0) 341 7113-116 / 118
Scientific Library (WBB)
Telefon: +49 (0) 341 7113-115
Technical Support Team (LOUIS)
Telefon: +49 (0) 341 7113-179 / 145 / 115
dzb lesen offers self-produced braille books, tactile picture books for blind children, relief and large print calendars, games, tactile geographic maps, sheet music, greeting cards, and much more for sale.
We present our range of products at trade fairs, through our sales team, and in our online shop. In addition, dzb lesen offers a great variety of Braille and audio magazines for subscription.
Reducing barriers for blind, visually impaired and print-disabled people, conveying information and cultural offers in an accessible way, and creating inclusive facilities – these are tasks, faced by many different institutions.
dzb lesen’s services enable accessible communication as the basis of inclusion – in short, we help our clients with their projects.
Producing media in braille as well as studio and relief productions are part of our classic product portfolio.
Accessibility is crucial in online communication and for digital documents. Our BIKOSAX team helps with the implementation.
A unique service: The DaCapo team converts sheet music into braille and large print for professional and hobby musicians to order.
Private clients, i.e. blind, visually impaired and print-disabled users, may also request individual services at dzb lesen – e.g. braille transcriptions or audio productions.
dzb lesen has a long history. With its tradition of more than 125 years, the institution founded on 12 November 1894 is the oldest specialist library of its kind in Germany.
As the German Central Library for the Blind, (DZB), the non-profit institution faced many challenges over the years and influenced modern developments in its field. Changes in the German copyright law in January 2019 made it possible to re-position and rename the institution. In November 2019, it consequently became the German Centre for Accessible Reading – dzb lesen. The name says it all: The centre develops offers for blind, visually impaired, and print-disabled people and thus enables reading for all.
dzb lesen is a public enterprise of the Free State of Saxony belonging to the Saxon Ministry of Science, Culture and Tourism (SMWK).
To make media accessible, the centre adapts printed publications. Texts are transcribed into braille or edited in large print, music scores are transcribed into braille music, pictures are converted into touch images, and audio books are narrated. The centre has its own recording studio, printers, and bindery.
How are accessible books produced? What is braille? Are there pictures for blind people as well? During guided tours of our house and public events such as our open day, interested children and adults get insights into dzb lesen‘s work and history.
As the German Centre for Accessible Reading we are on hand with help and advice for our user groups and partners, we cooperate with associations of affected people, schools, publishers, and libraries. A lot remains to be done to improve access to media without barriers.
Our LOUIS team answers questions from blind, visually impaired and print disabled users on technology, such as DAISY players or smartphones, e.g. during our regular technology club.
Through our initiative, public libraries can offer accessible media to their users whose sight is declining.
Public institutions in Saxony have to make their online offers accessible. We have been commissioned to monitor this and to offer consultation.
We support the publishing sector to immediately produce accessible literature, such as eBooks.
Our friends‘ association “Freunde des barrierefreien Lesens e.V.” (Friends of Accessible Reading) supports the centre in its efforts to produce and offer more accessible media for blind, visually impaired, and print disabled people. For this, the help of donators as well as book and sheet music sponsors is required – i.e. just friends who financially support the common goal, “reading for all”.