The following is an excerpt of an article by Culture editor Ewan Gillings which will feature in our third print issue, to be released on the 15th May.
Find out how to get your own copy of the issue here.
In an age of the internet, online publications, and Kindles, the humble book appears to be an entity that has lost its place.
Seemingly unable to compete with the practicality of the phone, the instantaneous access of blogs, or the ‘philosophy’ of Jeremy Corbyn, it has ceased to be the integral part of human progress that it once was.
It is no exaggeration to claim that the invention of the printing press was one of the most significant moments in human development; the ability to mass produce information and ideas for public consumption on a supply and demand basis was integral to much of the political, religious, and social remoulding of the late medieval and early modern era. The fact that the book no longer fulfils this role is a real shame.
The book not only serves a practical purpose – the transfer of knowledge, ideas, beliefs – but it also serves a theoretical one. This is the value they hold as distinct items, be it sentimental, or even financial. People keep books from their childhood, and read them to their children; family books, such as Bibles, are kept and handed down through the generations.
They connect people with what has come before them. This will never be the case with other forms of text; no one in 30 or so years will be handed a Kindle and told ‘this is what your mother and I read Harry Potter to you on.’
The writer’s values, the impact of their society upon them; it is all contained within its pages and chapters. Award-winning novelist Fiona Mountain, in an exclusive comment to Bournbrook, wrote that the book
‘gives a sense of longevity, of old age wisdom and learning. Ebooks just do not have the same gravitas.’
This is a perfect summation of the importance and distinctive advantage of print over electronic; it contains a certain air that cannot be matched.
Read the rest of this article in the print issue, information on which can be found HERE.