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Wednesday, Oct 20, 2021
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Bibliofile

Pulping books -- Ashutosh Varshney's Ethnic Conflict and Civic Life, Anita Rau Badami's Tamarind Mem, Vinod Kumar Shukla's Naukar ki Kameez ...

Bibliofile
Bibliofile
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Some publishers are sticklers for quality. Finding a few errors in Ashutosh Varshney’s Ethnic Conflict and Civic Life, his publishers, Yale University Press, have decided to take what would be considered here as a drastic last resort: to pulp the book and bring out a new edition. Pulping, despite the way it sounds, is not about enhancing its popular appeal. It means putting the condemned book through a shredder. Publishers here use a cruder method—literally ripping the book apart after stripping off its cover. The nightmare for the manual paper shredders must be when the orders are out for a revised edition of a dictionary. All the outdated dictionaries are then sent to the condemned department for execution.


The reasons for such brutality to books are several: in the West it’s mostly for quality control. In India, there are other pressing reasons for pulping. What does a publisher do, for instance, with a book...

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