Read On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History (ALA Notable Books for Adults) by Nicholas A. Basbanes Online


A Best Book of the Year Mother Jones,Bloomberg News,National Post,Kirkus ReviewsA consideration of all things paperits invention that revolutionized human civilization its thousand fold uses and misuses , proliferation, and sweeping influence on society its makers, shapers, collectors, and pulperswritten by the admired cultural historian and author of the trilogy on all things book related A Gentle Madness Patience and Fortitude How could any intelligent, literate person not just love this book Simon Winchester and A Splendor of Letters Elegant, wry, and humaneAndr Bernard, New York Observer Nicholas Basbanes writes about paper, from its invention in China two thousand years ago to its ideal means, recording the thoughts of Islamic scholars and mathematicians that made the Middle East a center of intellectual energy from Europe, by way of Spain in the twelfth century and Italy in the thirteenth at the time of the Renaissance, to North America and the rest of the inhabited world Basbanes writes about the ways in which paper has been used to record history, make laws, conduct business, and establish identities He makes clear that without paper, modern hygienic practice would be unimaginable that as currency, people will do almost anything to possess it that the Industrial Revolution would never have happened without paper on which to draw designs and blueprints We see papers crucial role in the unfolding of historical events, political scandals, and sensational trials how the American Revolution which took shape with the Battle of Lexington and Concord, began with the Stamp Act of 1765 the Dreyfus Affair and the forged memorandum known as the bordereau Americas entry into World War I with the Zimmerman Telegram the Alger Hiss spy case and Whittaker Chamberss testimony involving the notorious Pumpkin Papers Daniel Ellsberg s release of the Pentagon Papers in 1971 and the scandal of Watergate Basbanes writes of his travels to get to the source of the storyto China, along the Burma Road, and to Japan, whose handmade paper, washi, is as much an expression of the human spirit as it is of craftsmanship to Landover, Maryland, home of the National Security Agency and its one hundred million ultra secret documents, pulped by cryptologists and sent to be recycled as pizza boxes and egg cartons to the Crane Paper mill of Dalton, Massachusetts, a seventh generation family owned enterprise, the exclusive supplier of paper for American currency since 1879 and to the Kimberly Clark mill in New Milford, Connecticut, manufacturer daily of one million boxes of Kleenex tissue and as many rolls of Scott kitchen towels.Entertaining, illuminating, irresistible, a book that masterfully guides us through papers inseparability from human culture ....

Title : On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History (ALA Notable Books for Adults)
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 0307266427
Format Type : Hardcover
Language : English
Publisher : Knopf First Edition edition October 15, 2013
Number of Pages : 448 pages
File Size : 660 KB
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History (ALA Notable Books for Adults) Reviews

  • ARG
    2019-03-26 05:31

    Exactly what it says. The early chapters focus on the origins of paper and how it was made in the beginning and into today. Then it moves onto how paper had an effect on things like architecture and ideas. Another section deals with how it is used and how that has changed like newsprint into sanitary health products. Finally poignant moments that deal with paper as the line between a medium and the artifact itself are discussed. I did notice that the paper this book was made with was quite nice feeling substantial but not overly heavy. I really enjoyed this micro history and it encompasses so many interesting things

  • Elton Hall
    2019-04-10 05:55

    Basbanes always writes in a way that strolls through his topic, in this case paper. He manages to provide insights at every point, along with fascinating details on the processes and business of papermaking, as well on the value and mystique of paper itself. Like his other works, this volume deserves a leisurely read. It will deeply affect the reader's understanding of and appreciation for something so easily taken for granted. Basbanes is unique in his writing--entertaining, confident, informative. It invites the reader to savor a topic, to relax and enjoy the world, and to be affected thereby. His beautiful language and deep knowledge of his subject reminds the reader that sometimes it is more important to read and digest rather than just gather information. No one issues this invitation better than Basbanes.

  • mayzey
    2019-04-18 08:53

    I am very glad I ordered this book. Information abounds in the pages. Interesting stories related to the subject. It has a wonderful

  • Ken Mitchell
    2019-03-28 02:49

    I felt a bit guilty buying this on a kindle given the topic but I was traveling and wanted to read it on a trip. I found rich, readable and informative. As a lover of paper products, especially for writing, drawing and creating I was happy to learn about the origins and uses of my favorite medium.

  • John D. Cofield
    2019-04-16 06:41

    Nicholas Basbanes is well known as the author of A Gentle Madness, Patience and Fortitude, Every Book Its Reader, and other works celebrating books and the fine arts of collecting and reading them. It is a natural progression, then, for his latest work to deal with the substance from which books are made. On Paper is a fascinating work, highly scholarly yet inviting, dealing with the many ways paper has contributed to and enhanced our world.

  • Read to live
    2019-04-20 07:52

    The contradictory nature of paper is just one of the fascinating aspects of this book. Paper is the thing and not the thing, as its worth "relies almost entirely on what has been written, drawn, or printed on its surface." Nicholas Basbanes recounts dozens of the 20,000 documented uses for paper, and reminds us that bound up in the most mundane of objects, there is the potential for the deepest of human expression. This thorough exploration of one of our greatest inventions is worth reading—yes, on paper.

  • Gordon B. West
    2019-04-16 01:45

    Got this for my father-in-law; he is an engineer and really enjoyed this book. Fun concept of a book about paper made with special paper.

  • Elizabeth McDilda
    2019-04-11 08:54

    I found it a bit heavy going. The "Everything" in the title? It's no idle boast. Sure, and I'm richer for having the book upon my shelves - anyone would be. Every so seldom is the evening, betwixt this book and that, I'll snug up to On Paper and languish in the lengths men went to be heard.