Introduction to Books

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This presentation is designed for use when covering books in an introductory mass media course. Content includes early books, book types, types of readers, book industry, books clubs, authors, blockbuster syndrome and books by crooks

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Introduction to Books

  1. 1. Books: The Durable Medium Chapter Outline History Industry Controversies
  2. 2.  Early Forms  Earliest paper evolved around 3000 BC.  Papyrus to parchment, made from dried animal skins.  Greeks & Asian cultures made early books
  3. 3.  The Printing Revolution  This Person came up with moveable metal type.  Printing changed the world ▪ From oral culture to literature culture. ▪ Led to many changes
  4. 4.  The Book In America  1530’s - Spanish established first press in the Americas. ▪ In Mexico City.  Early colonial publishers escaped repression in England,  Parchment gives way to early paper
  5. 5.  Many colonial printers ran bookstores. ▪ vertical integration. ▪ What is vertical integration?  Print shops/bookstores ▪ Became meeting places & educational centers.  The Library Company of Philadelphia
  6. 6.  Universal Education  Massachusetts – ▪ Passed law requiring every child be taught to read  Universal education ▪ Became law in the U.S. in 1820s.  McGuffey’s Readers, ▪ 1st published in 1836
  7. 7.  Books and Slavery  Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass,  Uncle Tom’s Cabin, ▪ Published in 1851 - 1st national best seller.  The Book-of-the-Month Club was formed in 1926,
  8. 8.  Paperback Books  Mass-market paperbacks introduced by Pocket Books in 1939  Male-oriented mysteries, Westerns, and thrillers  Harlequin, marketed romance novels grew in the 1960s,  Trade paperback - heavier cover and better quality paper.
  9. 9.  New Forms of the Book  Audiobooks – Started for people with vision problems,  E-books – Digital files, usually downloaded from Internet. ▪ E-books have the potential to change the medium. ▪ Hypertext fiction ▪ Anyone remember the type of books with this feature?
  10. 10.  Types of Books  Trade books – account for largest share of books sold. ▪ Fiction and nonfiction that are sold to the general public.  Educational books – textbooks for schools ▪ Elementary, secondary, college, and vocational.
  11. 11.  Reference books – used to look up facts and information.  Professional books information for specific occupations  The specialty classification ▪ Religious books, high school and college yearbooks,
  12. 12.  The Players  Less than 200 full-time professional authors of books. ▪ Most authors teach, work for newspapers/magazines, or are celebrities.  Authors write under contract or on spec;
  13. 13.  The Bookseller  Barnes & Noble ▪ Accounts for more than 25 percent of book sales.  Megastores have about 100k titles, ▪ Many perks & hard to find content  Independent bookstores ▪ Not part of a larger company. ▪ Indy Bookstore ▪ Any advantages to independent bookstores? What?
  14. 14.  Amazon.com is the leading online bookstore  Developed “Bookmatcher”  Recommends books based on customer’s other preferences.  There are many other online booksellers ▪ What other sites have you gone to for books?  Book Clubs ▪ What are some book clubs you are familiar with
  15. 15.  The Reader – Determine what’s published.  Bibliophiles ▪ Consume 50 or more books a year.  Casual readers ▪ Enjoy reading, but only a few books a year.  Required readers ▪ Only read for work or studies.  Illiterates ▪ Never learned how to read.  Aliterates ▪ Those who can read but don’t.
  16. 16.  Book Censorship – Banned Book link  The First Amendment ▪ Restricts government interference with free speech, ▪ Any act of government censorship tends to be a serious issue.  Censorship by schools & libraries has been controversial. ▪ Any books that were banned by your school? Why?
  17. 17.  Challenging a book, provides publicity that stimulates sales. ▪ What books were publicized and sold well?  Book censorship around the world ▪ Usually far stricter than in the U.S.  Censorship can protect children from ▪ Pornography, obscenity, and writers who advocate violence. ▪ Do you agree with this? Why, Why Not
  18. 18.  The Blockbuster Syndrome  Publishing blockbusters ▪ Controls the economics of the industry.  Big payfor potential blockbusters ▪ Little money for more literary works.  Midlist authors ▪ Write books with literary merit but are not obvious blockbusters.
  19. 19.  The Blockbuster Syndrome  The quest for blockbusters ▪ Has led to “books by crooks.” ▪ Such as “A Millions Little Pieces”  Another problem of the phenomenon is ▪ Decline in quality & accuracy in works of nonfiction.  Also, a number of books turn out to be hoaxes or plagiarized works.

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