After Words with Nicholas Basbanes
Jan 4, 2006
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David Kipen interviewed Nicholas Basbanes about his book Every Book Its Reader: The Power of the Printed Word to Stir the World
, published by HarperCollins. In this study of literary culture, Mr. Basbanes .. Read More
David Kipen interviewed Nicholas Basbanes about his book Every Book Its Reader: The Power of the Printed Word to Stir the World, published by HarperCollins. In this study of literary culture, Mr. Basbanes attempted to discover how historical figures formed their ideas and opinions by tracking down the books that influenced them. Mr. Basbanes researched the reading habits of John Locke, Isaac Newton, John Adams, Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, Henry James, Thomas Edison, Helen Keller, and Adolf Hitler, among others. Mr. Basbanes also talked to well-known readers of our time including historian David McCullough, literary critic Harold Bloom, and child psychologist Robert Coles.
Nicholas Basbanes is a columnist for Fine Books and Collections magazine, writing a bi-monthly column, “Gently Mad.” With his wife, Constance, he also writes a monthly review of children’s books for Literary Features Syndicate, which they established in 1993.
David Kipen, the new director of literature for the National Endowment for the Arts, was the book critic for the San Francisco Chronicle. He was also a book critic and essayist for NPR’s ‘'Day to Day'’ program and KCRW’s ‘'Overbooked.'’ He has also been on the jury for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and was a board member of PEN America.