This is a really interesting question, and one I’ve often thought about. If you could go back into the past, what would you change? Or what would you see if you could go to the future? This is especially fascinating in the context of books. Books have both changed dramatically but also stayed the same throughout history. If a time-traveller from 1200 CE came to our time, they would be able to recognize our books as books. There has been no all-encompassing shift in what we use to read. The printed page, in form and function, endures. However, I would love to be able to go 200 years into the past and show them my ebook reader, which was purchased for a bit over 100 dollars but can hold almost 2,000 books! When I first heard about the sheer storage space e-readers possess I was astonished. So while books have not disappeared, the possibilities surrounding books have expanded. Things like mass-production and digital distribution have made books accessible to almost everyone, which would have been unheard of a century ago. By the same token, it’s very difficult to imagine what the future might bring for the book. Rather than being purely a matter of advancing technology, the evolutions in accessibility and readership have come about as a combination of technological and social factors. This is also why I don’t think the printed book will ever become obsolete. As Duguid wrote, “…to offer serious alternatives to the book, we need first to understand and even to replicate aspects of its social and material complexity” (Duguid, 1996). The book fulfills a particular niche that, in thousands of years, humanity has never been able to replace.
In that light, what I would want out of this time travel experiment is to go maybe 50 years into the past and talk to the emerging digital futurists about how the present day is full of complimentary ways of reading, and encourage them to not think about replacing the book so much as expanding our possibilities. There is no one way of reading, after all. This became even clearer to me after I wrote my paper on Interactive Fiction. Hyperlinks did not replace printed books, but they also offer exciting new ways of thinking about narrative.
Duguid, Paul. “Material Matters: Aspects of the Past and the Futurology of the Book”, In The Future of the Book. Edited by Geoffrey Nunberg. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996.
This week’s blogging question really had me stumped. I’ve been contemplating what I would find important enough to say to people in the past and to people in the future. Reading and the book is a constantly evolving concept that it makes it difficult to really identify one key area that should be identified and remarked on as an important point to mention. As I was thinking about this very point…I realized that something I’d like to ask someone 500 years from now, rather than say, necessarily, is “What is a book?” If e-books and reading texts digitally is something that we’ve already grown accustomed to in the short 2-3 decades that they’ve really integrated themselves into our lives, I wonder at the possibilities 500 years into the future. Having said that, the introduction of the internet, digitized text, e-books, etc. hasn’t really significantly changed how we understand books as an object and as a concept, which means that if we were to answer this question of “What is a book?” we would probably answer with something akin to “It’s an object with bundled pages, text, a cover and often houses bodies of literature.”
My final paper for this course focusses on the way in which books often exist as symbolic representations of the self, of relationships and self-identity (Kaiser and Quant 356). Depending on the volume of books you read, whether or not they’re fiction and your identification with a specific social group or personal identity has significant ramifications on the intensity to which your curated (or, unintentionally curated) social expression and personal portrayal is displayed and accepted by peers who view your collection of books (Rentfrow, et al. 254). I’m sure that we all have books at home that serve different functions. Some are books we absolutely love, some are books we’ve read but don’t care much for, others are books that look pretty and others are books that have somehow ended up there. Even though we might all own books that are formed somewhat similarly, the significance of our organization system, the ones we choose to display and where we choose to display them says a lot about us as individuals and, whether we like it or not, people will make inferences about us based on these factors.
Realizing that books, whether or not they serve as active reading material at the current time, play an integral role in shaping public opinion as well as our own opinion of self, I began wondering about the future of books. I’m not necessarily someone who fears the evolution of books and the possible eventual disappearance of books (I don’t see this happening anytime soon, to be honest), but I do wonder about the eventual new format of books. I mean…the format we know and, presumably, love has stuck around through all manner of modern advancements like microfiche, microfilm, e-books, digitized pdf documents, etc. but is this likely to last? Will something be introduced within the 500 year time span that will alter the way in which we experience books so significantly that it improves upon the current traditional model of a book? I’m not going to kid myself and say that books are necessarily the first thing that comes to mind when considering time travel, but because books are such an integral part of any society (the world round) it would be an incredible experience to discover the future reality of the book. I think that I would probably be excited about any possible outcome to this question, whether or not books have changed.
Kaiser, Johannes and Quandt Thorsten. “Book lovers, bibliophiles, and fetishists: the social benefits of heavy book usage.” Psychology of Popular Media Culture, vol. 5, no. 4, 2016, pp. 356-371.
Rentfrow, Peter J., et al. “Listening, watching and reading: the structure and correlates of entertainment preferences.” Journal of Personality, vol. 79, no.2, 2011, pp. 223-258.
Whenever I think about the potential for books, or vinyl, or any other kind of format to fall into obsolescence, I always think about my mom. I can’t count the number of times that we’ve been out shopping together where she has paused and cocked her head to the side, and pointed to a dress or a skirt or a blouse and remarked that the cut or style reminds her strongly of something she wore in the 70s or 80s. Every time it happens, she laughs and remarks that “everything comes back into style”. This rule of fashion is equally applicable to technological formats. The resurgence of vinyl as a format for music is an apt example of the phenomenon: what’s old may well be what’s new again in no time.
I think it’s important to remember first and foremost that print books are not dead yet. In fact, if the format preferences of the people on this blog are to be taken as any indication, print is actually still not only viable, but popular too. The high and mighty cynic in me is tempted to suggest that perhaps if publishers spent more time developing new and engaging ways to reimagine the “book” and less time wringing their hands, they wouldn’t have to worry quite so much about the future. That being said, I think the book is being threatened not so much as a printed and physical entity, but as a concept. New and novel digital technologies have given rise to a whole new set of entertainment media. The migration of print content online has resulted in a virtual explosion of available material. The environment can be very distracting. As our attention spans shorten and the demands become ever-more numerous, the long form narratives and intricate arguments that books so heavily favour are becoming increasingly incompatible with the breakneck speed at which we live our lives.
I wish I could time travel in two directions at once: back twenty five years and forward another twenty five years. I have the same message for 1991 that I have for 2041, and it applies primarily to the caretakers of children. I would implore both groups to please devote as much time and as many resources as possible to developing strong literacy skills in children. In 1991, the Internet was just beginning to emerge as a sociotechnical entity. And given how far it has progressed since then, I can barely even begin to comprehend what 2041 is going to look like. Maybe I won’t even know what it will look like. Maybe I’ll be experiencing the whole thing through my virtual reality glasses (see you in virtual Maui). But as Johns has pointed out, we have created an “information economy” with precious few ground rules (2009, 3). We feel limitless when it comes to the information we can access, and future generations will likely feel this even more. But the reality is that not all the content that we can access through our devices is created equal, and more than ever we need to be patient, critical, and discerning when we read in any format. I implore educators to send children out into the world with the tools they will need to navigate the information landscape we have created, and continue to create every day.
Books teach us about the world. The fictional worlds we explore teach us to use our imaginations to consider perspectives other than our own. The non-fiction we consume connects us with the strange and beautiful and beguiling world around us, as we strive constantly to understand its vastness. They are why libraries feel like such magical places of promise and inspiration to those who have experienced the potential of books. And more than any well-fingered volume or historic digital artifact, it’s that feeling that we should be passing onto future generations. It’s that feeling that lets us be sure that an ebook is a print book is above all else: a book.
Johns, A. "A General History of the Pirates". In Piracy: the Intellectual Property Wars from Gutenberg to Gates, 1-15. University of Chicago Press, 2009
In class, we’ve talked a lot about how despite the fact that digital books try to imitate printed books, they are simply not the same. I have come across this many times in my book history classes as well. Some people don’t like this at all, but others think that these differences present exciting opportunities for e-books to become an innovative new medium. My essay actually touches on this quite a bit, as my argument is focused on the material differences between printed books and e-books, so I have spent the last two weeks or so immersed in exactly this issue - the future of the book, and the exploration of the e-book, and digital texts more broadly, as a medium. I still haven’t decided how I feel about e-books yet, but I can say with perfect certainty that they fascinate me, and I’m curious as to how they will coexist with the printed book in the future.
In class we have also talked several times about how people seriously overestimated the digital revolution and the death of the book, and some scholars, like Andrew Steeves and Andrew Piper, have posited that this revolution won’t truly come until e-books stop imitating printed books and embrace their unique medium in order to completely transform the concept of the book - more than they already have. According to a PEW Centre study, most Americans still prefer a printed book over an e-book, but there does seem to be a trend in terms of people doing quick, more daily kinds of reading on a digital device. This divide is fascinating to me because it suggests that people use devices almost grudgingly, as if they can’t deny the convenience and portability of it. Anne Mangen, a reading researcher I read while researching my essay topic refers to this phenomenon as “haptic dissonance” - where the visual and physical experience of reading on a digital device are at odds with each other. Katherine Hayles is another author I've enlisted to support my claims in my essay, and she is a firm proponent that materiality by definition affects meaning, which means we simply learn differently, and interpret things differently, when we read in print versus when we read online, or on a digital device. Time after time, I see academics pointing out that we don't seem to think about the texts we read on screen quite as deeply, and that seems to be rooted in the nature of the texts as digital. I wonder how that can inform the selection and the design of e-books if we keep this in mind - that different mediums lends themselves best to different kinds of reading.
I guess my message to the future of the book would be to take a chance on this, to stop sticking so closely to the conventions of the printed page and experiment with what the digital page is capable of. I don’t know if books like the Alice in Wonderland e-book, or Al Gore’s book app and the Wasteland app are already doing just that - embracing the medium - so maybe it’s already begun. I’m just really curious to see what that pushing would produce, and how it would impact reading and society altogether.
Hayles, Katherine. Writing machines. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press, 2002.
Mangen, Anne. 2016. "What Hands may Tell Us about Reading and Writing." Educational Theory 66 (4): 457-477. doi:10.1111/edth.12183. http://resolver.scholarsportal.info/resolve/00132004/v66i0004/457_whmtuaraw.
Piper, Andrew. Book Was There: Reading in Electronic Times. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012.
Rainie, Lee, Kathryn Zickuhr, Kristen Purcell, Mary Madden, and Joanna Brenner. "The Rise of E-Reading." Pew Internet & American Life Project(2012).
In my final paper about audiobooks I mention both Ruberry’s article and Uzanne’s short story in which the end of the book was predicted as being brought about by the invention of the phonograph. If I were to go back in time, I’d go back to the late 19th century and assure users that the printed book was alive and well far past the millennium. The fear of technology seems to play a constant theme for those studying the humanities and technological innovations have been a concerning those working in literary labour fields every time something new impacts the idea we have about “the book” In class we discussed these fears and how many have been unfounded. In blog posts, I noticed that a number of my group members prefer physical books to digital ones even just from a purely collecting standpoint. While many acknowledge that digital books may be more convenient to own at times, they still purchase physical books.
The other thing I would want to warn people about is that even with the innovations and advances in technology, that technology is not perfect. Timing is a funny thing. I am writing this blog post on a borrowed MacBook from the Inforum because just one day before my last assignments were due, my own computer decided to crash. Nothing like the unbearable feeling of panic to remind us how dependent we are on technology and how useless we become when it fails. Yes I had my files backed up, but they weren’t the most recent versions of things like the final and edited versions of both essays.
Physical books, can actually be more reliable than digital copies. I’ve gone through two Kindle’s in the past eight years and yet have never had to replace a physical copy of a book. Maybe I am just cursed when it comes to technology but it doesn’t change the fact that when using technology, one does risk losing information if that information is not backed up somewhere else.
An interesting parallel to how technology has affected books is to look at how technology has affected the music industry. Unlike with books, technology has changed the formats that we consume music in drastic ways with older outdated formats becoming relics. Vinyl has made a resurgence in past years, but things like A-tracks and cassette tapes are no longer as popular if they once were, or even being manufactured anymore like A-tracks. Books however, remain just as popular as ever even with the introduction of e-readers and digital applications.
While we live in a world where technological innovations are occurring at an exponential pace and there is normally a general acceptance and excitement over it, there is still some reluctance to embrace it, especially from the book world. I would want to go back in time and assure people that while technology changes the format of the book, the book as a physical object is not dead or even dying. I would argue that new formats like audiobooks and to an extent ebooks are not meant to replace the physical book, but provide a different but no-less valid form of reading.
If I could go back in time to whichever year I chose to help people in that era understand an important thing about the future of the books and reading, I would go back to 1939. Before explaining just what I would tell people of the time, I will first outline the state of literacy at the time, and the significant societal position that media held. All around the world, prior to the start of World War II as well as throughout it, people were being manipulated to believe and do terrible things through insidious, systematic propaganda manipulation, both from sources within their own countries as well as from those beyond them. Heavily-biased media reporting of events and supposedly-held-by-the-majority opinions had the power to turn people against those who had been their neighbours for generations, and often in spectacularly-cruel, criminal and murderous ways.
The Second World War was a major international event which has brought to light the significant power that the media can have upon populations of whole countries. This era was also the first to have great access to a wider variety of media, something which we have today but take for granted; this variety included newspapers, radio broadcasts, newsreels played before films and, of course, books (Panayi 2003, 467). Within the phenomenon of media manipulation, it was not only that people were being encouraged to believe specific messages and ideologies as they were newly-produced, but the media that was made available for consumption by people was also limited. In Germany and elsewhere in Europe, not only were Jewish children, themselves, prevented from becoming very literate due to being banned from attending public schools, but members of the public who were not Jewish were also prevented from becoming very-diversely literate. This is because artistic and literary works created by Jews and members of other minority groups were removed from places where the wider public could be exposed to them (The Architecture of Doom). Interestingly, a main tool of propaganda for the Nazis was to distribute media which blamed Jews for manipulating people through propaganda (Panayi 2003, 466).
Once back in this era, I would want to tell people that personal feelings and beliefs should not prevent someone from exposing themselves to as great of a variety of authors who represent different political leanings as possible. It is notable that so many Holocaust memoirs exist today, as this shows that people acknowledge the importance of preserving and sharing memory, and this includes both those who write the memoirs in the first place, as well as the publishing companies which invest in the idea that such books are of interest to readers. Related to this, it is also encouraging to know that many schools seem to be recognizing the importance of media literacy today, in that they require students to read such books that are as important to preserving human memory and perspective as ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ (Spector and Jones 2007). Although it is true that today, we have much easier access to a variety of media materials than ever before, widespread reaction to recent political events have reinforced the idea that it is vital to try to be media-literate and to purposefully-avoid being trapped in an infamous echo-chamber, in which everyone just readily agrees with one another.
The Architecture of Doom. Directed by Peter Cohen. 1990. Sweden: Knightscove-Ellis International, 2003. DVD.
Panayi, Panikos. 2003. "Victims, Perpetrators and Bystanders in a German Town: The Jews of Osnabrück before, during and After the Third Reich." European History Quarterly 33 (4): 451-492. doi: 10.1177/0265691403334002.
Spector, Karen, and Stephanie Jones. 2007. “Constructing Anne Frank: critical literacy and the Holocaust in eighth-grade English.” Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy 51 (1): 36-48. doi: 10.1598/JAAL.51.1.4.
Hear ye, hear ye!
One of the great things about reading in the contemporary timeline is the access to books and the accessibility of books. To go back 300 years or more and let the common people know that it would be a popular past-time for people of all walks of life and differing abilities would be amazing. Presumably not helpful for them, and perhaps a risk of my arrest for upsetting the social order, but nonetheless. E-books allow for font sizes to be changed, my Google Books reader on my phone lets me click on a word and get a definition (I bought my first e-book for this paper, just as an aside. I do not enjoy reading it but if I'm ever stuck without a book, at least Pinocchio will be there for me). There are audio books, and apps and programs that can read books to us. And we are, largely, a literate society. If we aren't, we still can access books. Andrew Piper wrote that reading "has traditionally been imbedded in aural practices of reading aloud." (Piper, 48) Reading has also traditionally not been accessible to everyone.
In Geroge Gissings The Netherworld, Clara cries "I wish I could neither read nor write! I wish I had never been told that there is anything better than to work with one's hands and earn daily bread!" Reading and literacy is still valued but it is also expected (at least in our western world). It is no longer something apart from daily life, but embedded within it. The ability to read does not place one in a specific class. And books are accessible, affordable, and occassionally free. Individuals from all over the world can bond over their favourite books which can be translated into dozens of languages and made accessible through a variety of formats. Ideas can spread internationally in a short period of time and discussions can happen even though time zones and geography seperates us.
Just as social status no longer prevents people from reading, disabilities do not either. Books “are a technology in their own right, one developed for the refinement and advancement of thought. And this technology is a powerful, long-lived and adaptable one” (The Economist, 51). In this modern world technologies can be combined so people can read if they are visually impaired or have physical problems that make holding a book in the traditional sense untenable.
Books contain ideas, thoughts, views of the world as it is and how it could be different. Perhaps, 300 years ago, this wouldn't have seemed useful. But society has evolved because of ideas disseminated in pamphlets, books, and the online world. And for all the negatives, I would still rather be in 2016 than 1716.
"From Papyrus to Pixels: The Future of the Book." The Economist 413, no. 8908 (October 11, 2014): 51. Accessed 2 December 2016.
Gissing, George. The Netherworld. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.
Piper, Andrew. Book Was There: Reading in Electronic Times. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2012.
If I could go back in time with a specific message about the future of the book, I would go back to 48 BCE (or even before) to a time before the destruction of the Library of Alexandria. (Aside: I have just discovered that this event is not nearly as cut-and-dried as I had thought - I was only familiar with the account of Plutarch that Caesar accidentally burned it down around 48 BCE, but apparently not! For recommended reading on the subject see Battles, 2003.)
In any case, however the destruction of the Library of Alexandria happened, I would go back to advise ancient libraries to build in a more fire-safety-conscious way, to make more copies of the papyrus scrolls, to take advantage of the invention of parchment, and to store copies elsewhere. (I could be the creator of LOCKSS ("Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe") and the inventor of off-site storage - is there a way to profit from that and put the money into more cultural preservation? Call me, Julius Caesar!)
We look in wonder at the scrolls, tablets, manuscripts, and books that survived from ancient times but there was so much lost!
And even more heart-breaking is that we don't even have a full picture of what was lost - some works are only described briefly
in surviving works, such as Berossus's History of Babylonia or the works of Aristarchus of Samos. Or the works of Hipparchus - except, Hipparchus invented trigonometry, so maybe not that. (Kidding!)
But can you imagine what it would be like to have the works of Hypatia available for study? Or more than just fragments of Sappho's poetry?
(Another aside: I'm not sure if these count as palimpsests or not,
but an unknown poem of Sappho's was discovered in 2005, "when
new techniques of analysing marks on discarded papyrus" revealed
a poem (Payne, 2014). At the time, it was reported that the fragment
was "recovered from the wrappings of an Egyptian mummy" (Fenton, 2005).)
Anyway, along with urging duplication of contents and inventing and profiting from the idea of off-site storage, I'd also urge the creation of rules and guidelines along the idea of the Geneva Convention, but for cultural artefacts, including texts. I know, I know, forbidding the destruction of cultural artefacts by warring nations is an impossible dream, but since we're approaching this from the position of time travel being possible, I figured I would aim high. It's worth trying, and this issue is sadly still relevant to us today since the destruction of cultural heritage does not apply just to ancient libraries.
In our own lifetimes, think of the losses of the library of Sarajevo, where "[t]he National Library was completely destroyed in the fire, along with 80 percent of its contents" (Huseinovic & Arbutina, 2012), of Baghdad, of Kabul, and the destruction of libraries and archives of Mosul. "[B]ooks represent a people's culture, history, and pride, and provide militants a concrete way to attempt to wipe clean a region's identity [...] UNESCO has called ISIS's book-burning campaign a sort of "cultural cleansing" (Haq, 2015). I consider this kind of 'warfare' a heinous and horrible act, one that would not be out of place in Community's 'darkest timeline' (2011).
So my journey back in time would have as its goal to explain to the builders and ancient librarians that if preserved and protected, these texts will be treasured and studied for many generations. Or maybe I will go back in time to create a secret storehouse of the world's artefacts like in National Treasure (2005) and leave clues for future-me to discover it someday! Hey - a girl can dream.
"In the Season Three episode "Remedial Chaos Theory", six different timelines are presented. They all branch off from the "prime" timeline based on the roll of a die that determines which study group member has to get the pizza. After a series of unfortunate events, Troy's timeline is referenced by Abed as "the darkest timeline"". (From http://community-sitcom.wikia.com/wiki/Darkest_Timeline).
In the Darkest Timeline, everything is the worst.
It's OK, there's also a version where they all stay in the "prime" timeline,
because Abed is a non-evil genius. (He could totally "Encarta it.")
Battles, M. (2003). Library: An Unquiet History. New York: W.W. Norton.
Bruckheimer, J. (Producer), & Turteltaub, J. (Director). (2005). National Treasure. California, USA: Walt Disney
Fenton, B. (2005, June 25). Fourth work of Sappho is revealed to the world. Telegraph. Retrieved
Haq, H. (2015, February 25). ISIS burns Mosul library: Why terrorists target book. Retrieved from
Huseinovic, S. & Z. Arbutina. (2012, August 25). Burned library symbolizes multiethnic Sarajevo. Retrieved
McKenna, C. (Writer) & Melman, J. (Director). (2011, October 13). Remedial chaos theory [Television series
episode]. In Krasnoff Foster Productions, Harmonius Claptrap, Russo Brothers, Universal Media Studios
(UMS), Sony Pictures Television, Community. Hollywood, California: National Broadcasting Company
Payne, T. (2014, January 30). A new Sappho poem is more exciting than a new David Bowie album. Telegraph.
Retrieved from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/booknews/10607569/A-new-Sappho-poem-
During this entire course, we have explored the impact of technology and new social paradigms on the traditional book format, the nuances of the industry, the treatment of the text, and the very of act of reading itself. The digitization of our cultural and social practices have completely changed the literary landscape, which is better and worse for many reasons. On the one hand, the sanctity of author's contributions as a critic and artist in their own right no longer holds the same level of prestige, nor does a book hold the same hegemony that otherwise characterized centuries of educative, political, technological, religious, and societal progress. For example, without the invention of Guttenberg's printing press, the Protestant Reformation would have never existed, as it predicated on the vernacular reading of Biblical scripture and allowed for individualized interpretations of the text rather than have its contents dictated and orated to an illiterate crowd. This would then lead to innovations in pedagological practices and public education, philosophical developments that shaped the constitutions and ideals of our modern societies, and usher in a wave of democratic and social reform that have shaped our current civilization. On the other hand, similar paradigms are still occuring, arguably at a much faster rate because of technology giving the majority of people access to the tools and outlets to put forth their own ideas and creativity. Social media and the Internet have generated open spaces by which everyone can contribute information constantly, something which supercedes the static and immovable quality of the book. That is not to say that books are obsolete; in fact, these technologies have actually inspired dynamacy in the printed word. Authors and publishers are exploring more and more avenues that innovate an antiquated format into contemporary artworks unto themselves. It is best put by John Guillory when he say that the study of the future of the book means:
...giv[ing] a better account of the relation between literature and later technocal media without granting to literature the privelege of cultural seniority or to later media the palm of vicotrious successor (Lurz 2016, 166).
It is a complex and flucctuating relationship, one that is simultaneously symbiotic and parasitic, divergent and unified, balanced and uneven, at war and at peace.
Therefore, if I were to relay a message regarding books, it would be to the indiscriminate future, whether its a sci-fi utopia as in Star Trek or a post-apocalyptic dystopia as in Mad Max (depending on the Trump presidency, this is very possible). That mesage would simply be a small note placed into the leaflets of a blank notebook, possibly even many, that would read: "tell me a story." I am not sure of who I would give it to, since it would ultimately depend on what kind of future exists, however its purpose would be to invigorate that laden human sense of creativity that has driven our society up until that point. If in their space ship, traveling between galaxies as if it were as simple as a road trip, they possess advanced forms of communication and hybridized languages, then their contribution will differ greatly from a grizzled scavenger who has not had the need to write because he has been busy trying to survive the zombie hordes, nuclear fallout, or whatever has destroyed the planet. Will they even chose to communicate through words? Perhaps it will be through pictures or highly individualized code. Will it be autobiographical or fictious, or maybe even both? How will they even use the notebook: in conventional or unorthodox means? The sheer limitlessness of possibilities that this task entails is indicative of the current state of books. They evolve within a framework guided by human creativity, technology, and cultural paradigms. Especially now with the democratization of writing and generated content, the book as a format is no longer autocratic and exclusive. Nowadays, anyone has the potential to be an author in their own regard, whether they are published in a New York Times Bestseller or in an open online forum for fan fiction. Everything is ceaselessly changing; neverthless, we will nostaligically safeguard these artefacts as their contributions to our very existential fabric cannot be overlooked. My only hope in delivering this message is to encourage that same progress.
Lurz, John. The Death of the Book. New York: Fordham University Press, 2016.
Image by Grant Snider in the New York Times Sunday Book Review on April 1, 2012.
I made a survey about browsing, book selection, and book buying in print and digital - if anyone wants to take it it might be of use for my paper, at least to get an idea of how people navigate these things. (I'm not sure my behaviour in this way is "typical"...)