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Library : An Unquiet History

Author: Matthew Battles
Publisher: New York ; London : W.W. Norton & Company, [2003] ©2003.
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : First editionView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"From the clay-tablet collections of ancient Mesopotamia to the storied Alexandria libraries in Egypt, from the burned scrolls of China's Qing Dynasty to the book pyres of the Hitler Youth, from the great medieval library in Baghdad to the priceless volumes destroyed in the multi-cultural Bosnian National Library in Sarajevo, the library has been a battleground of competing notions of what books mean to us. Battles  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: History
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Matthew Battles
ISBN: 0393020290 0393325644 9780393020298 9780393325645
OCLC Number: 51305782
Description: x, 245 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Contents: Reading the library --
Burning Alexandria --
The house of wisdom --
The battle of the books --
Books for all --
Knowledge on fire --
Lost in the stacks.
Responsibility: Matthew Battles.

Abstract:

"From the clay-tablet collections of ancient Mesopotamia to the storied Alexandria libraries in Egypt, from the burned scrolls of China's Qing Dynasty to the book pyres of the Hitler Youth, from the great medieval library in Baghdad to the priceless volumes destroyed in the multi-cultural Bosnian National Library in Sarajevo, the library has been a battleground of competing notions of what books mean to us. Battles explores how, throughout its many changes, the library has served two contradictory impulses: on the one hand, the urge to exalt canons of literature, to secure and worship the best and most beautiful words; on the other, the desire to contain and control all forms of human knowledge."--BOOK JACKET.
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WorldCat User Reviews (2)

Too rambling to get through

by armandofox (WorldCat user published 2009-08-04) Poor Permalink

I tend to love material on libraries, history of libraries, history of books and publishing, etc., but this writing is just too rambling. The author is clearly knowledgeable about libraries and the historical contexts in which the great libraries evolved (and many ultimately fell) but he doesn't structure...
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Rise and Fall of Libraries

by ricklibrarian (WorldCat user published 2005-12-03) Good Permalink
I am a bit surprised by Library: An Unquiet History by Matthew Battles. The author writes a well balanced history until he reaches the twentieth century, including many of the main developments in the concept of the library. Libraries in ancient Alexandria, ancient China, Jewish synagogues, mosques,...
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