Books, Articles, and Items of Academic Interest
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I am among those who read only printed books. E-Books are as lost to me as glyphs on Mayan stelae. I don’t care what Radiant Snake Jaguar I was doing September 18, 524 AD, although it is nice to know that, after centuries of effort, archaeologists and linguists have figured out how to read the inscriptions.
Kindles are definitely more convenient than stone stelae, but they have other drawbacks. Among these is their facelessness. A book has a cover, and even if we are enjoined not to judge all that lies within by its exterior, we get familiar with a book first by looking at it. Moreover, most books look back. This one glares, “You’ve been meaning to read me for years. Here I am.” Another mopes, “You used to love me.” Still another glances away, “I am not for you.”
E-books, by contrast, are like Model T Fords, whose maker in 1909 remarked that a “customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black.”
Laura W. Perna, ed. Taking It to the Streets: The...