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Friday, October 27, 2017

Bibliocide

Most of us have read Ray Bradbury’s book Fahrenheit 451 which presents a future American society where books are outlawed and "firemen" burn any that are found.  But of course, book burnings have actually taken place throughout history.  I actually posted about this topic earlier this year:  https://schatjesshelves.blogspot.ca/2017/02/book-burnings.html.

This past summer I read a Smithsonian article entitled “A Brief History of Book Burning, From the Printing Press to Internet Archives” which even mentioned the scientific research documents that were locked away or destroyed under the Stephen Harper government in Canada in 2014.  Read the entire article at https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/brief-history-book-burning-printing-press-internet-archives-180964697/.

Sometimes, however, authors destroy their own manuscripts and sometimes they are destroyed accidentally.  On this topic, Literary Hub recently posted “ten stories of the destruction (or threat thereof) of unpublished works, diaries and letters by notable authors” (http://lithub.com/10-tales-of-manuscript-burning-and-some-that-survived/).