Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Beyond Good and Evil


Here you'll find free for the downloading a pdf recreation of a public domain (?) edition of Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil. Never mind for now the content--the verbalized ideas. Just please peruse the pdf and note the slightly warped lines of text where the paper bends down at the binding. See the mottled paper, the faint brittleness of which the scanner managed to capture. The sight of the typeface and the slightly imperfect edges of the pages and the stained discolorations are as much a part of the experience of this book as are the words printed on the page. The cover looks to be a rather flexible leather binding. I can imagine the solid weight of it in my hands. I guess right away what it would smell like and the sound the pages would make as they turned, and what the paper will feel like under my fingertips. Apart from the reading matter there's a transcendent quality to the item itself. Without reading a word, I'm already changed by this book. Without touching it, by analogy to other books like it that I have known, I experience it, and that experience itself has import. Whatever else becomes of the book in our digital era, I hope the next generations get to read a book like this one.

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