Iconic books are texts revered as objects of power rather than just as words of instruction, information, or insight. In religious and secular rituals around the globe, people carry, show, wave, touch and kiss books and other texts, as well as read them. This blog chronicles such events and activities. (For more about iconic books, see the links to the Iconic Books Project at left.)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Burning Books by Fishburn

Palgrave Macmillan has released Burning Books by Matthew Fishburn. John Sutherland reviews the book in the Telegraph:

Matthew Fishburn's fascinating chronicle follows ritual book-burning through the ages, from the Old Testament's Jeremiah to those latter-day descendants of the venerable Caliph, who burnt The Satanic Verses in Bradford in January 1989 (warming the publisher's hearts in the process - nothing gets a book headlines faster than angry flames licking round it).

Sutherland comments that book burning "doesn't feel illiberal: it feels blasphemous." Yes, that's what we've been trying to point out ...

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