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Topic Summary

Posted by: nacho
« on: March 09, 2017, 01:34:54 PM »

I'm agog over their fucked up website.
Posted by: RottingCorpse
« on: March 09, 2017, 01:18:57 PM »

My buddy is all agog over the ad campaign for 'Laureate' by Henry Abner.
Posted by: monkey!
« on: August 12, 2015, 05:33:35 PM »

Posted by: nacho
« on: August 12, 2015, 08:32:21 AM »

Now everyone's trying to recreate the Harper Lee magic:

It’s taken 100 years, but one of J.R.R. Tolkien’s earliest stories is finally being published for the masses. Get ready for The Story of Kullervo.

The manuscript was started by Tolkien while he was still in college at Oxford, and is based on the Finnish epic poem The Kalevala. It’s that epic that inspired Tolkien’s interest in legends, and he once called this work “the germ” that would eventually lead him to create the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the various other works that make up his Middle-earth saga.

It’s a fascinating peek into the development of Tolkien as a writer and his processes, and though the version here is technically unfinished (it comes with some of Tolkien’s notes in the margin), it’s still well worth a read for fans.

Here’s the official description for the story:

Kullervo son of Kalervo is perhaps the darkest and most tragic of all J.R.R. Tolkien’s characters. ‘Hapless Kullervo’, as Tolkien called him, is a luckless orphan boy with supernatural powers and a tragic destiny.

Brought up in the homestead of the dark magician Untamo, who killed his father, kidnapped his mother, and who tries three times to kill him when still a boy, Kullervo is alone save for the love of his twin sister, Wanona, and guarded by the magical powers of the black dog, Musti. When Kullervo is sold into slavery he swears revenge on the magician, but he will learn that even at the point of vengeance there is no escape from the cruellest of fates.

It’s worth noting this isn’t technically the first time the piece has been published. A previous version was published included in 2010’s Tolkien Studies: Volume 7. But this new release marks the first time it’s been available for the general public to read.
Posted by: nacho
« on: September 10, 2014, 10:16:35 AM »

A fascinating article below on who gets the royalties for Mein Kampf:

Completely unrelated to the article, researching their claim that Hitler has no living descendants led me down a Wiki Wormhole:

Mein Kampf is one of the most controversial books ever sold. Written in prison by Adolf Hitler following his failed 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, the two-volume autobiography/rambling screed outlines his anti-Semitic worldview and the political reasoning that would eventually fuel the Third Reich. Mein Kampf is still printed and it is readily available in American libraries and bookstores, which raises the question: Who gets the royalties? Hitler has no heirs, and the moral dubiousness of profiting from his vile manifesto has prompted scrutiny since its initial publication.

In 1933, textbook publisher Houghton Mifflin released the first English language version of Mein Kampf in America under the title My Battle. A petition was circulated calling for the New York City Board of Education to stop using Houghton Mifflin titles, to which the publisher's board responded by defending itself in a statement, saying, "The greatest service one can render humanity in general and Germany in particular is to place My Battle within the reach of all, that each, for himself, may see whether the book is worthy or is an exhibition of ignorance, stupidity, and dullness." However, the Mein Kampf controversy that reached U.S. courts was not about subject matter, but rather copyright infringement.

When Hitler copyrighted Mein Kampf in 1925, he had already renounced his Austrian citizenship and had registered himself as a ”stateless German.” Stackpole, a Pennsylvania publisher, picked up on this, and released a competing version of Mein Kampf in America without securing the rights. When a federal judge permitted this on the grounds that Mein Kampf was public domain, a third publisher, Reynal & Hitchcock, released their own version into the market as well. According to Cabinet Magazine, "Stackpole advertised that it paid no royalties to Hitler, to which Reynal & Hitchcock responded by promising all profits from the book to a refugee relief fund." Meanwhile, Houghton Mifflin appealed the initial ruling, and on June 9, 1939, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in their favor, giving them sole rights to publish Mein Kampf in America.

Hitler never saw any of the American royalties. By the time the legal dust had settled, World War II erupted and the U.S. enacted the Trading with the Enemy Act, which allowed the government to seize all profits from Mein Kampf. According to the New Statesmen, "During the Second World War, the U.S. government made more than $20,000 from royalties on Mein Kampf ... By 1979, the Justice Department had collected more than $139,000 in royalties." These profits were handed over to the War Claims Fund, and, "eventually, the monies were paid on a pro-rata basis to claimants, many of them American ex-POWs."

In 1979, Houghton Mifflin paid $37,254 to purchase Mein Kampf's publishing rights back from the U.S. government. Cabinet reports that "over the next two decades, with sales of approximately fifteen thousand copies per year, the best estimate is that Houghton Mifflin realized profits of somewhere between $300,000 and $700,000 on its 1979 investment of $37,254. With the publication in October 2000 of a U.S. News and World Report story detailing the history of its publication of Mein Kampf, however, Houghton Mifflin announced that it would donate all of its accrued Mein Kampf profits to charity."

A Houghton Mifflin representative tells us that they "donate all royalties and profits from the book to organizations that promote diversity and cross-cultural understanding. These have included The Gerda and Kurt Klein Foundation and Facing History and Ourselves."

Under German copyright law, a book automatically goes into the public domain at the start of the new year 70 years after the author's death. On January 1, 2016, Mein Kampf's copyright will be lifted. In Germany, the book's rights are owned by the state of Bavaria and they have forbidden its publication there. German ministers are currently prepping for the copyright's expiration, and are considering a new law to prevent its publication or, should that prove futile, a guarantee "that there is a scholarly edition which provides a scientific and critical analysis in order to demystify this horrible text."
Posted by: nacho
« on: September 09, 2014, 04:48:04 PM »

World's worst book covers. Prepare to laugh loudly.

I'm turning this into an ongoing collection, so we can go back five years from now and celebrate communal Amazon comedy:,5219.0.html
Posted by: RottingCorpse
« on: September 09, 2014, 04:32:48 PM »

Posted by: monkey!
« on: June 28, 2014, 12:45:34 PM »

France loves stirring it up.
Posted by: monkey!
« on: June 25, 2014, 01:51:23 PM »

Or the Vatican.
Posted by: nacho
« on: June 25, 2014, 12:20:19 PM »

Or Amazon.
Posted by: RottingCorpse
« on: June 25, 2014, 11:57:54 AM »

Or Google.
Posted by: monkey!
« on: June 25, 2014, 11:54:03 AM »

Until Facebook buys them out.
Posted by: RottingCorpse
« on: June 25, 2014, 11:37:50 AM »

Amazon is evil, but this is where an enterprising young Amazon rip-off can gain some ground. It's how Hulu and Amazon Prime snuck in on Netflix.
Posted by: monkey!
« on: June 25, 2014, 08:54:32 AM »

Amazon is the devil.

I used to think Microsoft would be the big daddy corporation that RoboCop would fight for....