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, January 5, 2007

Congressional oath on Qur'an

After much controversy, Rep. Keith Ellison has been sworn in on a Qur'an (an event being publicized by the federal goverment for its positive spin). I think Ellison or his staff showed great intuition into the iconic symbolism of the oath. He countered the controversy over using a Qur'an by asking the Library of Congress to borrow Thomas Jefferson's copy. So he neutralized the criticism by employing a relic book associated with one of the country's founding fathers.