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The Gutenberg Elegies: Fate of Reading in an Electronic Age Hardcover – 22 May 1995

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber (22 May 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 057119849X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571198498
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 15.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 782,646 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

" Birkerts on reading fiction is like M.F.K. Fisher on eating or Norman Maclean on fly casting. He makes you want to go do it." -- "The New Yorker"

"Birkerts on reading fiction is like M.F.K. Fisher on eating or Norman Maclean on fly casting. He makes you want to go do it." --"The New Yorker"

Birkerts on reading fiction is like M.F.K. Fisher on eating or Norman Maclean on fly casting. He makes you want to go do it. "The New Yorker"" --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Inside Flap

"[A] THOUGHTFUL AND HEARTFELT BOOK...A literary cri de coeur--a lament for literature and everything implicit in it."
--The Washington Post
In our zeal to embrace the wonders of the electronic age, are we sacrificing our literary culture? Renowned critic Sven Birkerts believes the answer is an alarming yes. In The Gutenberg Elegies, he explores the impact of technology on the experience of reading. Drawing on his own passionate, lifelong love of books, Birkerts examines how literature intimately shapes and nourishes the inner life. What does it mean to "hear" a book on audiotape, decipher its words on a screen, or interact with it on CD-ROM? Are books as we know them dead?
At once a celebration of the complex pleasures of reading and a boldly original challenge to the new information technologies, The Gutenberg Elegies is an essential volume for anyone who cares about the past and future of books.
"[A] wise and humane book....He is telling us, in short, nothing less than what reading means and why it matters."
--The Boston Sunday Globe
"Warmly elegiac...A candid and engaging autobiographical account sketches his own almost obsessive trajectory through avid childhood reading....This profoundly reflexive process is skillfully described."
--The New York Times Book Review
"Provocative...Compelling...Powerfully conveys why reading matters, why it is both a delight and a necessity."
--The Harvard Review --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Gutenberg era is dead. The Electronic era is here to stay. It's a new world we have to face. If you have children, they belong to the "Downloading" generation. I suggest you read this book first, if you want to understand how far away your children navigate in an ocean of unknown past and stormy future. Sven Birkerts is the best navigator and he deserves our appreciation.
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Format: Paperback
If you've ever felt that you're becoming and old fool because you care more about your old paperbacks than the latest instalment of Lost, then Sven is the man to put the iron back in your soul.No cultural reletavism, no pandering to the cleverness of the computer nerd.Reading is King,Sven tells you why.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars 34 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Technology Kills Culture! Really! 2 Aug. 2016
By F. J. PRISCO - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another screed about how technology is killing culture. Which appears to have a lot of truth to it, until you notice the copyright date & see that books are indeed still selling. Hey, it could still happen; just ask Paul Ehrlich, who predicted in 1970's THE POPULATION BOMB that we'd be suffering worldwide famine today. I assume those who read this are still finding food.
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant essays. 15 July 2013
By Michael Cairns - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Although time moves quickly in the world of technological innovation, this collection of essays has fared well. Birkerts has clearly thought long and hard about the changing role of reading and writing in the age of the web. Sven had me running for my (electronic ) dictionary every page or so to check out phrases and words I hadn't even heard of. But I love that. And I love having to read an essay twice because I gobbled it up the first time through with the pure enjoyment of his language. The second time through I force myself to slow down and deep read for the argument and insights.
If you love good books and great writing and are concerned about their place in a Facebook world, I highly recommend 'The Gutenberg Elegies'.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very philosophical, and insightful. It examines what it ... 13 Jan. 2015
By John - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
very philosophical,and insightful. It examines what it means to be a writer and why its important.
5.0 out of 5 stars a must read 6 Sept. 2012
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A wonderful surprise loved it. Esoteric essential work erudite writer essential reading esdpecially pa teaching Henry James to a new generation :enry ;ames
1 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the gutenberg elegies 18 Jan. 2008
By Guisela Bahruth - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this is my husband's book, so I don't have to much to say about it but it has to be good because he reads it everyday.
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