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Showing posts with the label New York

A Universal History of the Destruction of Books: a best-seller

"A terrifying, masterly book from the erudite pen of Fernando Báez" (Alberto Manguel)

Fernando Báez' "A Universal History of the Destruction of Books": Review

Source: Blogtrotter This Venezuelan librarian answers what a history student, at Baghdad's university in 2003, wonders after the library's been looted of every volume: why does man destroy so many books? The book begins and ends in Iraq, where the earliest texts we have survive, only because of the flames that consumed and preserved their clay tablets. Twelve years of research results in the first "single history of their destruction" (7). Intriguingly, the author has "concluded that the more cultured a nation or a person is, the more willing each is to eliminate books under the pressure of apocalyptic myths" (18) Bibliophiles often can be biblioclasts. We all, he insists, in dividing up "us" vs. "them" negate each other, and play into censorship, exclusion, and eradication as we cannot tolerate criticism or opposition. Translated in pithy style by Alfred MacAdam, it's a fluid and direct overview. Uruk, where the first surviving

A Universal History of the Destruction of Books: longseller

La informacion que nos llega del dificil mundo editorial de Estados Unidos es que se mantiene como un longseller la traduccion al ingles de la obra de Fernando Baez de Atlas Books. Aqui va la pagina de la editorial con la portada en paperback: A Universal History of the Destruction of Books From Ancient Sumer to Modern-day Iraq by Fernando Báez “Impressive. . . The best book written on this subject.” —Noam Chomsky A product of ten years of research and support from leading American and European universities, A Universal History of the Destruction of Books traces a tragic story: the smashed tablets of ancient Sumer, the widespread looting of libraries in post-war Iraq, the leveling of the Library of Alexandria, book burnings by Crusaders and Nazis, and suppressive censorship against authors past and present. With diligence and grace, Báez mounts a compelling investigation into the motives behind the destruction of books, reading man’s violence against writing as a perverse anti