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On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History (2013)

av Nicholas A. Basbanes

MedlemmarRecensionerPopularitetGenomsnittligt betygOmnämnanden
3651253,434 (3.67)14
A consideration of all things paper--the invention that revolutionized human civilization; its thousand-fold uses (and misuses); its sweeping influence on society; its makers, shapers, collectors, and pulpers--by the admired cultural historian.
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» Se även 14 omnämnanden

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I found this book interesting but hard to come back to. I could see it more as a college student's research source than what my 2015 self attempted to use as entertainment during his first year of bachelor's degree life. Both Nicholas and Mark Kurlansky's "Paper" are quite long, for paper is apparently older than several well known countries and even empires. I may give it a re-read now that I am done with school. Perhaps it would behoove me to try this tome as an audio book. ( )
  nlmii | Jul 31, 2020 |
I had high hopes for this book. After all, the origins, making, uses and history of paper should be extremely interesting? Not this book. This book is disjointed and jumps around from topic to topic, most of which are only vaguely related to paper. It is a combination of travelogue, lengthy interviews, biographies, paragraphs of credentials, random facts, selective historical anecdotes, excessive (irrelevant in my opinion) historical detail about the people and places that have had something to do with the making, manufacturing, researching, storing, repairing, collecting, selling, buying, or using paper.

However, even after ploughing though all this detail, the book somehow fails to get to the core of paper - more in-depth paper making processes, the science, physical properties and technology of paper and paper making would have been nice. The author appears to be more interested in the idea of paper, not the paper itself.

All in all, I found the book to be rather tedious, with the occasional interesting bits.








( )
  ElentarriLT | Mar 24, 2020 |
Another journalist's book piling thousands of factoids in the hope of getting a compelling story - but ending with just a big pile. (I stopped reading soon, it was harrowing.) ( )
1 rösta andreas.wpv | Sep 10, 2017 |
Another excellent book from the author. There's a lot of research reflected in this history of all aspects of paper, from creation to industrial use. It's almost everything but paper for books. My only minor quibble is in the structure, where it felt like there was a narrative arc part way through as it felt like it was wrapping up, only to see well over a hundred pages left that turned out to be almost a series of appendices. I will be so much more aware of the paper around me in life, in all its many forms.
  amarie | May 5, 2016 |
An accessible, engaging, fascinating, and freewheeling tour through 2,000 years of history examining how the invention of paper impacted human civilization and how it became ubiquitous and inseparable from everyday life. Lively and delightful. ( )
  Sullywriter | May 22, 2015 |
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A consideration of all things paper--the invention that revolutionized human civilization; its thousand-fold uses (and misuses); its sweeping influence on society; its makers, shapers, collectors, and pulpers--by the admired cultural historian.

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