Apr. 14th, 2009 06:13 pm
wojelah: (Default)
[personal profile] wojelah
RIP, Judith Krug.

Consider the list of books that have been banned.

Don't take it for granted!

(And because it bears repeating, a thought on why you shouldn't.)

The word libro ("book"), is very similar to the word libre ("free") only the final letter separates the two words. I do not know if both words come from the Latin liber ("book"), but the truth is that they complement each other perfectly; the book is one of those instruments, created by man, to make ourselves free. Free from ignorance and ignominy, free too from demons, from tyrants, from the fevers of the millennia and military unrest, from opprobrium, from triviality, from insignificance. The book affirms liberty; it illustrates distinct options and paths to follow; it establishes individuality; at the same time, it fortifies society and exalts the imagination.

There have been evil books throughout our history, books that imprison the intelligence; they freeze it, and stain our humanity, but they have been overcome by others: the generous and celebratory books like Quixote, War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy; the novels of Pérez Galdós, all of Dickens, all of Shakespeare, Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain, the poems of Whitman, the essays of Alfonso Reyes and the poetry of Rubén Darío, López Velarde, Pablo Neruda, Octavio Paz, Antonio Machado, Luis Cernuda and so many others that continue to vanquish those demons.

If man had not created writing, we would never have emerged from the caves. Through books, we know everything that was in our past. Writing is the photography and also the radiography of the practices and customs of all of the distinct civilizations and their movements. Through books, we have known the thinking of the Sanskrits, Chinese, the Greeks, the Arabs, of all the centuries and of all nations.

In the end, the book for us is a path to salvation. A society that does not read, is a society that is deaf, blind and mute. 

                                                                                                                     --Sergio Pitol
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