Publication of the Oxford Companion to the Book

January 30th, 2010 by Claire_Squires | Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Publication of the Oxford Companion to the Book
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OCBThis week, Oxford University Press published the Oxford Companion to the Book, a two-volume reference work covering all aspects of book culture, including publishing, printing, reading and authorship, from ancient times to the present day.

Edited by Michael F. Suarez S.J. and H.R. Woudhuysen, the volumes begin with overview essays on subjects including the technologies and economics of print, children’s books and the electronic book, as well as chapters on books and publishing in different countries and regions around the world. The work then has over 5000 encyclopaedia entries, with definitions and descriptions ranging from the accordion book to the Zimbabwe International Book Fair, by way of mini-histories of Faber & Faber, the Harry Potter phenomenon, and even the telephone directory.

A publishing feat in itself, the Oxford Companion to the Book contains over a million words, and is the work of two general editors, around 30 associate and assistant editors, nearly 400 scholars, and a staff team at OUP. Claire Squires, Director of the Stirling Centre for International Publishing and Communication, was the Associate Editor with responsibility for the Twentieth Century Book in Britain, and wrote the overview essay ‘The History of the Book in Britain from 1914’.

The reference work has already received rave reviews from the Sunday Times (‘fabulous … monumental … beautiful’) and the Sunday Telegraph (‘an extraordinary tribute to a revolutionary invention … magnificent’).