Chicago - Nov. 25, 2020
Music TV Politics Sports Books People Places & Things
 
Beachwood Books
Our monthly books archive.
Beachwood BookLinks
Book TV
NY Review of Books
London Review of Books
Arts & Letters Daily
American Reader Campaign
Quimblog
Myopic
U of C Press Blog
Devil's Due
LitLine
NYT Books
Normal Words
New Yorker Books
IndieBound
2nd Story
Chicago Zine Fest

The Strange History Of Binding Books In Human Skin

By Elizabeth Svoboda/Undark

In 2015, Megan Rosenbloom traveled to Harvard University's Houghton Library in search of a book called Des destinées de l'âme ("Destinies of the Soul") by the French author Arsène Houssaye. This copy of Houssaye's masterwork had a singular distinction: At the time, it was the only book on the planet proven to be bound in human skin.

For Rosenbloom, a librarian at UCLA, the trip served as her entrée into a field she'd studied for years: "anthropodermic bibliopegy," the practice of binding books in human epidermis.

It's easy to assume this topic is too restricted or too gruesome for a book of its own, but Dark Archives: A Librarian's Investigation Into the Science and History of Books Bound in Human Skin proves that assumption wrong. As Rosenbloom crisscrosses the globe to confirm the purported origins of skin-bound books - a cracking detective story in itself - her journey offers unusual insight into what defines informed consent, what separates homage from exploitation, and how power disparities can breed casual inhumanity.

Continue reading "The Strange History Of Binding Books In Human Skin" »
Posted on November 22, 2020
Permalink


History Club

A People's History Of Thanksgiving

Where Is The Gold?
With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.
Continue reading "A People's History Of Thanksgiving" »
Posted on November 28, 2013
Chicago Blog Review

Chicago Blog Review: Fruit Slinger

A welcome blast of summer-friendly food porn on a daily basis.
Continue reading "Chicago Blog Review: Fruit Slinger" »
Posted on August 6, 2009

The Strange History Of Binding Books In Human Skin

By Elizabeth Svoboda/Undark
As Rosenbloom crisscrosses the globe to confirm the purported origins of skin-bound books - a cracking detective story in itself - her journey offers unusual insight into what defines informed consent, what separates homage from exploitation, and how power disparities can breed casual inhumanity.

Posted on November 22, 2020

The Irreverence Polling Needs

By W. Joseph Campbell/The Conversation
In 1984, at a time when election polling was going through another rough patch, the legendary Bud Roper said in a speech to the American Association for the Advancement of Science that "Our polling techniques have gotten more and more sophisticated, yet we seem to be missing more and more elections."

Posted on November 17, 2020

When Prophecy Fails

By Wikipedia
What a 1950s Chicago housewife tells us about our country today.

Posted on November 11, 2020

The Lives, Loves, Deaths & Art Of Neanderthals

By Susan Cosier/Undark
"Neanderthals were never some sort of highway service station en route to Real People. They were state-of-the-art humans, just of a different sort."

Posted on November 8, 2020

The Artificial Scarcity Of E-Books In Education

By Rory Mir/The Electronic Frontier Foundation
If technology enables us to share, reproduce and update educational materials so effectively that we can give them away for free, it's our moral duty to do so.

Posted on October 30, 2020

How Journalists Invented Wild Bill Hickok

By SIU Press
Mythologized and sensationalized, Hickok was turned into the deadliest gunfighter of all, a so-called moral killer, a national phenomenon even while he was alive. It wasn't true.

Posted on October 29, 2020

How Chicago Public Library Books Get From Here To There

By The Chicago Public Library
"Watch this behind-the-scenes tour of one of the hidden secrets of CPL - the sorting machine!"

Posted on October 22, 2020

Maps For Migrants And Ghosts

By SIU Press
For immigrants and migrants, the wounds of colonization, displacement, and exile remain unhealed. Even our most personal and intimate experiences are linked to the larger collective histories that came before.

Posted on October 12, 2020

MUSIC - The Ventures: Stars On Guitars.
TV - Newsmax On Fox News's Betrayal.
POLITICS - How Illinois Dems Made Rutherford B. Hayes President.
SPORTS - Northworstern To Northbestern.

BOOKS - Binding Books In Human Skin.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Old Man With A Gold Chain.


Search The Beachwood Reporter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter
Email:

Follow BeachwoodReport on Twitter



Beachwood Radio!