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Rare Books and the Rare Book Trade
 
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Women

Women's Work: women in Economics, Politics and Philosophy | New blog from Peter Harrington

Published on 01 Nov. 2016
The contribution of eminent male thinkers to intellectual and public life is well documented: we all know our Kant from our Keynes, our Wittgenstein from our Wilberforce. It's no secret that women and women's issues have historically been granted less space on the political, philosophical and economic stages, and this deficit is unfortunately reflected in publishing history.
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Women

Collecting - America's Gibson Girl: the Good Years

Published on 15 Dec. 2015
The period from 1900 to the First World War (what historian Walter Lord called "the good years" in America) was a rare time after plumbing and before the federal income tax was reintroduced, when Americans lived with confidence. Perhaps the epitome of that era was the Gibson Girl, an ideal of American feminism created by illustrator Charles Dana Gibson. She was beautiful, intelligent, sturdy and unruffled. She was created before the turn of the century and held sway for more than two decades.
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Women

Rare Book Selling - a Man’s World?

Published on 16 Jan. 2015
"Women have less bite and competence", are "prone to self-doubt" and "fear of losing their livelihood". Women have a different time management system and "cannot handle large sums of money". Women are part-time booksellers and specialise in children's books, they "have a rich partner in the background", or they work in the profession until "Mr. Right" comes along and marries them. Good old prejudices – they still exist ...
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Women

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Betty Smith

Published on 05 Dec. 2014
December 15 is the birthday of writer Betty Smith (1896), whose first novel, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1943), became an instant bestseller. The semi-autobiographical book chronicles the struggles of an Irish-American family in New York City in the early part of the 20th century. The title is a reference to the Tree of Heaven, an invasive species from China that is found on vacant lots in New York. Its struggles for survival are the central metaphor of the book.
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Women

How Elizabeth Gaskell Saved Charlotte Brontë's Reputation

Published on 28 Nov. 2014
Brontë's 1847 novel, Jane Eyre, earned the ire of critics for its frank depiction of passion in a woman - a governess, no less. Brontë was maligned as "unwomanly" and "unchristian." Poet Matthew Arnold wrote, "Miss Brontë has written a hideous, undelightful, convulsed, constricted novel... one of the most utterly disagreeable books I've ever read." The Quarterly Review asserted that Jane Eyre revealed "tone of mind and thought which has overthrown authority and violated every code human and divine." The novel had its share of defenders as well, not the least of which was fellow novelist Elizabeth Gaskell.
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Women

Collecting Rare Books and First Editions - Louisa May Alcott

Published on 15 Sept. 2014
Louisa May Alcott (1832) is best remembered for her novels Little Women (1868), Little Men (1871) and Jo's Boys (1886), a trilogy set in Concord, Massachusetts, in the late 19th century. The books were loosely based on Alcott's life with her three sisters. Alcott never set out to write a trilogy but the books are linked by characters who appear in all three.
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1 - 8 / 26

From the Vault

A sneak peek in our archives

Article

Salon International du Livre Ancien & 25th ILAB International Antiquarian Book Fair, April 11-13, 2014, Grand Palais (Paris)

Most elegant! The Paris International Antiquarian Book Fair at the Grand Palais, in this year's edition the 25th ILAB International Antiquarian Book Fair, offers its ever increasing number of visitors a panorama of the highlights of our written heritage together with a vast selection of engravings and drawings, presented by nearly 200 leading professionals from around the world. Manuscripts and autographs, incunabula, rare and fine books, exceptional bindings, early maps and photographs, old and contemporary prints and drawings provide a fascinating potpourri for collectors and newcomers.
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Article

Collecting Science Fiction - Karel Čapek and the Origin of the Word Robot

Karel Čapek's Czech play RUR, (Rossum's Universal Robots) is notable for numerous reasons. Written in 1920, the play's commentary on the politics of its day earned its author a spot on the Nazi most-wanted list. RUR details a robot revolution that would overthrow the dominant class, humans, and lead to their extinction. Above all, the play is most well known for introducing the world to the word, "robot." In fact, before Čapek's play, what we think of as robots were mainly called "androids" or "automatons," with "automaton" meaning a self-operating machine. In Czech, "robota" translates to "forced labor." It's associated with the type of work done by serfs during the feudal ages.
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Article

How I Became a Bibliophile and Other Diverse Matters

It is a pleasure to be talking to you this evening. When Dianne and Kay generously invited me to speak to the Society, many different topics came to mind. I will attempt to cover several of them: how I became a bibliophile; some highpoints of my bibliophilia, with a focus on two books of special importance to me, both of them published anonymously; how I came to write Rare; some points about Rare; and a few final remarks about the future of books. Covering all these topics in 25 minutes might be difficult. We will soon see whether I can fit all these clowns into one Volkswagen. - Transcript of a talk given by Stuart Kells at a gathering of the Redmond Barry Society at Kay Craddock Antiquarian Bookseller in Collins Street, Melbourne
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Article

The study of paper as evidence, artefact, and commodity

Paper plays a subsidiary role in book production. It is the basic substance of which books are made, yet almost never impinges upon their communicative function. It serves as a mute vehicle of text, rarely noticed except when it fails of its purpose, when defects inherent in its manufacture impede the transmission and preservation of printed information.
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Article

Announcing the new ILAB Committee

At the Ordinary General Meeting on 20th September 2016 in Budapest the presidents of ILAB's 22 national member associations voted for Gonzalo Fernandez Pontes (Spain) as new ILAB president. He succeeds Norbert Donhofer (Austria) who served as President from 2014 - 2016 and he will be supported by ILAB Vice-President Sally Burdon (Australia).
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