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Wake Forest
University Press

Wake Forest University Press

Dedicated to Irish Poetry

Wake: Up to Poetry

"The act of poetry is a rebel act."

A 21st Century War

A war has been raging. You’ve seen it on TV, in your hometowns, and you’re probably a direct contributor to one side. I’m talking about the epic battle between e-readers and paper books.

I’ve recently read a couple articles, one in the NY Times, one in the Chicago Tribune, and a few more, defending one side or the other, and the evidence of why you should buy a Kindle is the same everywhere: e-readers are compact, easy to carry around, can hold an entire library, etc. etc. On the other hand, the other side’s defense basically comes down to one thing, in my mind: love.

This love of books and reading is something I’m very familiar with. Arriving to college freshman year, my roommate was shocked and a bit disgruntled when I pulled out the books that I had brought with me, not for school purposes, but more along the lines of “When I’m homesick/lonely/sad/relaxing/elated/stressed out/sick/etc., I’ll have what has seen me through so much of the same in the past.” I know how this might sound, a bit nerdy, or like I’m a hermit with only books for friends, but that’s not the case (I promise). We all have those stories that make us feel a certain way, those books that hold so much more than the story inside of them, and I feel like this intimacy would be lost if all you had was an electronic device, where you couldn’t see the wearing out of the pages with your favorite parts on them, or the tear stains when your favorite character dies. I’m aware that I’m a bit of a zealot when it comes to my defense of paper books, but I would hate for future generations to have to trade dog ears and familiar smudges for search bars and backlights.

Amanda R. :)

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