More than merely a place to buy books, today’s bookshop is a contemporary reader’s sacred space. Introducing Russian readers to writer and literary critic Jorge Carrión, Garage and Ad Marginem Press present his extended essay on bookshops.
Jorge Carrión regards bookshops as an important cultural phenomenon: unique and enclosed worlds. He will speak of how the first bookshops came about, trace their development in various cultural contexts, including under dictatorships, and explain how some books could bypass the censorship, while others got destroyed.
Carrión’s work explores the phenomenon of the bookshop in a broad cultural context, comparing, for example, its role in Eastern and Western cultures. But these general thoughts are balanced by an abundance of curious stories and details, such as Goethe, Zweig, Borges, and Mallarmé’s ideas on bookshops or the list of books Fidel Castro read while in prison.
In his talk, Carrión will also touch on Europe’s best-known bookstore chains and discuss their influence on the production of books, the culture of selling books, and reading.
A Russian translation of Bookshops has been published by Garage in collaboration with Ad Marginem Press.