Monday, January 19, 2009

Inaugural Language and Media

As my Latin teacher, Miss Cox, used to say, "Nihil novi sub sole," - there is nothing new under the sun, and this interactive from the New York Times measures all the buzz words used since George Washington's first inaugural address.

The publishing industry is in terrible shape, and several of my friends at B& were laid off last week. Can we take hope from the fact that Obama is a big reader? Will he be able to do anything to promote literacy and book purchasing, whether by individuals or by libraries?

Michiko Kukatani writes that "Mr. Obama’s first book, “Dreams From My Father” (which surely stands as the most evocative, lyrical and candid autobiography written by a future president), suggests that throughout his life he has turned to books as a way of acquiring insights and information from others — as a means of breaking out of the bubble of self-hood and, more recently, the bubble of power and fame."

However, it isn't enough for Obama to be a much needed literary president and for adult readers influenced by Obama rush out to buy books about Lincoln. I wish he would share the books Malia and Sasha are reading so that parents buy these books for their children (although the books need to be read, too).

The Boston Herald offers a list of must-see presidential movies. Embarrassingly, I have only seen one of them! Maybe it is time to join Netflix!

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