Archive for August, 2011
“Literature is my Utopia. Here I am not disenfranchised. No barrier of the senses shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourses of my book friends. They talk to me without embarrassment or awkwardness.”
Tags: BBC, Book, E-book, Germany, Riot, Waterstones
I have been absent from my blog for almost a month and it feels good to be back! The dreaded dissertation has finally been completed, after many sleepless nights and very little social life! I have never been so glad to get something out of the way! Last friday i handed it in and went to celebrate with other people on my course. Very weird that the MA is now finished! Just have to wait for results to see how i did, and then it’s time to job hunt!
As i was doing research for my dissertation, i came across many book-related things which i will share with you here.
Firstly, i found this BBC Radio4 programme which follows people trying to clear out books from their homes and what happens to books that have been abandoned. It’s really good because i understand how difficult it can be to get rid of books as a book-lover! (I did give many of my childhood books to charity shops when i was younger and rather thoughtless, but you have no idea how much regret doing that now!) It is available on BBCiplayer here- Too Many Books – BBCR4
The next thing of interest was this article:
It describes a trend in Germany for having bookshelves set up around cities where people can pick a book up for free and leave one they’ve read in its place, like a giant library. It’s a nice idea, but i doubt it would work so well over here in the UK.
Lastly, this article:
I thought this highlighted some important issues with people’s attitudes to reading and how it can be changed. People wondered why Waterstones didn’t get looted in the recent UK riots… well, books don’t have the same importance to some people as it does to people like me who love books. Why nick a book when you can nick a TV which is worth more money? These people, who complain that they are poor and that it’s only fair that they rob the so-called “rich” people (this the general gist of the rioter’s reasons for rioting, not my own opinion – i am disgusted with them), don’t think books are worth nicking. It seems that money worth means more than intellectual worth. It also rightly points out that “If publishing is full of white, middle-class people is it any wonder that bookshops are too? The writing community can be as diverse as it likes – in class, race, religion and genre – but if publishers don’t know how to market these books, they’re not going to find readers”.
I was amused by the statement- “Waterstones even challenged rioters to loot them as “they might learn something”. But why would this make a difference? After all, i heard in one news report that looters had broken into mobile phone shops and stolen phones, but people clearing up later had found them all over the streets outside because the looters had realised that they were dummy phones of no monetary worth. Well, durr!! Stupid much?
Anyway, moving on…
I had to ban myself from reading any books unrelated to my dissertation in order to make myself concentrate so i haven’t read anything new and worth reviewing yet. Of course the book-ban didn”t work so well, i got to a point where i was so fed up of being tied to a computer screen that i relented and started re-reading Twilight again! It is an easy read and was just a nice break from killing my eyes looking at the computer screen. (Yet another reason for me not getting on board with ebooks.)
I have a big pile of books to read sitting on my bookshelves, and as my birthday is approaching next week, i suspect i will either be given books or i will get money to buy new books, so i better get on with reading them!