tv The Role of Cultural Institutions in Fostering the Future of the Book CSPAN February 27, 2016 3:30pm-4:20pm EST
>> some would say this helped inmates prepare for the labor market. corporations are taking advantage of prisoners. why do they have to be exploited? and why not pay them a living wage since their family's lose the income member of that family? the high cost of maintaining with family members in prison leads to more than 1-3,000. this takes us back to our youth. our american dreams of upward mobility are common sense to us. if we study hard and work hard we will be rewarded. this is supposed to be an equal playing field in the land of opportunity. but reality is far from this.
black and brown children are being pipelined in the prisons in the u.s. and there is excesses of our people. funneled into service jobs not needed for manufacturing anymore. this makes it impossible for folks to live in the neighborhoods who they grew up and lived. but some are not. even if they graduated and their school closed they are intervened to be murdered by the state. we let legal weapons empty on to our black and brown youth.
brown, johnny warren, johnson, raymond oliver, brown, malika williams, kendrick, robert dummas junior, sharma edwards, damion robinson, treyvon martin, tamir rice. everything in life failed her, she raises her gates to the street protest. we are gathered together to end white supremacy because this is resistant.
[applause] >> do we have a time check to see about question and answer? >> one or two questions. anybody have a one or two questions? >> when the united states was originally founded, there were very few police departments. mostly all of the states made sheriffs over each county. and i think the sheriffs were elected by the people. today there is a situation where there is hundreds of different police departments and offices like the transportation, parking, they have all of these
different polices like school police and state police. they are creating these departments and none of them, or very few of them, have a chief elected by the people. the sheriff's in states were elected by the people and if there were police brutality the people could get rid of the sheriff and get another one and that would straighten out the problem. but they are appointed now and not elected by the people. are there any organizations trying to make more accountability over the police by having the police chiefs be elected? >> first, i think the important thing is having a historical analysis with this belief.
it goes all the way back to slavery. it goes back to those who are hired to be slaveholders who were trying to keep control of interactions by slaves and capture run away slaves. these were the first forms of the police in the south. in the north they were private agencies and not elected. they were hired by capitalist to control and protect their property. in the north, it was the scene with wear ware houses. these were the earliest forms of the police. we can go in the history and transformation but we have to under that the police are here to maintain the status quo. those whose best interest are
served by the status quo that is where the police are controlled by. it takes more than just electing. it takes a transformation of the entire system. then we can talk what forms of security we need to secure what we have created. it is not just about reforming the police. it is about transforming the system in which police have been licensed or whatever to protect. [applause] >> all right. thank you. all done. >> none of the people who spoke
in 2012, she joined the panel at the international summit of the book discussing the role of cultural institutions in fostering the future of the book. >> we are coming to a discussion on the role of institutions and fostering the teacher of the book. i will turn to the moderator to introduce the panelist once we are on the stage. sir herald is a distinguished finger in publishing and journalism and publisher and president of random house. and the editor of naf traveler magazine. vice president of u.s. news report and the daily news. currently he is editor at large
for writers. you may know him as the author of the book american century. he is one of the world's most distinguished journalist. please welcome sir herald evans. [applause] >> my grandfather because reading the daily times which i was then editing and my father was a steam train driver who left school at age 11 but loved reading. he flung the paper on one side and he said isn't that amazing? that you are editing this paper and your grandfather would not have read a word of it?
that was the influence of reading first from my father and then my mother who left school at 11 and went to work in a mill. this is carla hayden, there is no question, you can find all about her program you have, distinguished librarian. and when she referred to the book to that i never heard it referred to as before. she said it is a container. i have been fretting for the last 30 years about the disappearance of the book as i know it. i ran into a digital -- carla is
the dean and here is somebody else, this is dee from publishing. he is doing coding work now. where is jim? is he hiding? he is there. we know what you do. i just came from durham, my university, and i had to go up there and make a speech in the cathedral but i am always reminded when i go back to durham, which is such an important institution in the rise of christianity, and also of the book. i want to read you one little
thing here. we are going back it the 8th century. this is about 1790. in the golden gospels, many of you know it as such, and in the name of our lord jesus chris, my wife obtained these books from the army, known as the vikingsmevikings. they are incredible and from the most prosperous nation but they were barbarians so there is helpful for everybody. moy wife was saying these books, the german army was with pure
gold, and we did it for the love of god and we didn't want the holy books to be in heathen procession. in the rise of christianity and other religions the book is crucial. i want to start with it by saying everybody is terrified at the moment especially in the publi publius -- publishing world. how can we encourage people to read the book and does it matter whether they read the book digitally or in person. does it matter? >> you mention the container. we are finding, and i am speaking from the public library perspective, that we are
attracting more people with the pull of the digital container. in fact we just received a grant to expand, while the publishing industry is going through all of its challenges, a grant to provide more e-book titles and to also actually loan e-readers to the public so they can download and walk out of the library with the reader >> you print it? >> they can download it and also have the other books. we are finding it is encouraging the act of reading. >> i am going to come back to you. this is another ex-publisher here. you don't care whether it is in the books or in digits? >> i think as long as people are
reading it doesn't matter what the work is contained in. i think the generational shift -- >> what about the beauty of the book? >> i love books. i don't know that the next generation will have to same experience that i grew up with in terms of the tactile experience, the physical experience, and as a professional who is concerned with getting work out i don't care as long as they are having that solitary experience with the work of a writer. it breaks my heart. i think the container is beautiful. i really love to look at a book who doesn't know -- who does a note at the book of everything she types. i love to look at the decisions the publisher made about if the book is going to have ragged
edges. i love to watch people in bookstores touch books and have that tactile experience. i think ultimately what we get is something so deep and personal and about this kind of one-on-one experience between the reader and writer that however that happens we need to encourage it. technology is bringing us some place else and as long as we keep the artist in our fold we will be okay. in directing your energies, and continuing literacy and the preservation of all that, you don't care either whether it is physical or digital? >> in one sense the agency i
had, and because i hate to speak exclusively as an individual, has a love affair with the printed word. we are not agnostic on how something is presented but we are publically oriented so you do everything you can to move thought into the demesne -- domain. we are in the knowledge development and diss we do film preserve old books, finance the writing of new books, and then try to bring the public into access to knowledge that exists. and therefore, we are very big into digitization.
one of my favorite quotes is for many young scholars if it isn't on the internet it doesn't exist. that is a fairly awesome thought. i think we all identify with that but we also identify with what i hope is a dual circumstances that you can have a book with paper, and you can have a book that is accessed through the internet. that is almost the ideal world when you are speaking of the book. it may be the use of paper will recede but that is beyond our power. that is going to be a public choice. >> in terms of -- >> as a former children's
librarian i have to say and brain research has shown tactile and the book as the object for that container is where you are getting the earliest and most important experiences with text. that is where you find the wonderful -- and if you have seen children with picture books and you know that is where that type of creativity and engaging the mind that the digital is not as useful and helpful from 0-6. so learning and having the appreciation of the object is important. >> right. somebody gave me a replica of the "naria chronicles" and i
would like to ask everybody here. i have five children. when i was a young man bringing up my kids i was depressed by the low level of the books that were available to children. in the end the best books we had i didn't give them mark twain or charles dickens. i gave them the classics that were no longer available. what can you do in the american establishment to reach -- to actually make the reading experience an excitement for children? there is the arguments of phonetics and all of this. but how can you actually get that excitement stirred in them? you have got -- you have to go through the phonetic stuff but
when you get to the children's books -- when with was a father, well i still am a father, but i found it frustrating. >> to challenge young people is terrific. i think we ought to bring back our former speaker/investor. my wife is a children's book writer and writes in art history. she finds it is an enormously helpful to involve the visual. at the youngest ages the great books are pictures with a few words and they get more and more sophisticated in the sense of fewer pictures and more words and that might be a step ba backwards but it is a fact of how we deal with things. i think the greatest challenge in america when you look at the
statistics in crime. the kids that do not earn to read have an overwhelming factor they will spend a lot of time in jail. this is a national challenge for all of us. the other aspect is what is relevant to kids today. you can hardly dictate relevance. but there are aspects of the iimagination that people seek out. sometimes in the worst kind of circumstances the greatest kind of joy is soft. i saw a demonstration of this that seems really odd but it applies from another visual medium. a non-profit organization gave a colony of people living in the country of lebanon, they were refuges and in the camp, and they gave all of the kids a small, brownie automatic camera.
they took pictures and they were astonished almost every picture by instinct the kids chose someone smiling or something funny. as sesame street has found there is a new world people want to visit and books are how we travel. they are the adventures of life. there is something young in the human spirit that seeks something not just exactly the same but somewhat different. >> i sat at the dinner table with a 4-year-old and 8-year-old a few weeks ago. the parents are a novelist and a poet. i was shocked to see the
4-year-old spending quite a bit of time on the family ipad and reading on the ipad. and the old publishing saw is offended. how can you let this child play with this device at the table? the 8-year-old is into books and high up on the book worm at school and looks down on her brother because she thinks she is more adult by reading real books. the parents said it does want matter. this is what turns him on. if it is the screen that he is playing with, if he is getting through a book from beginning to end, we don't care. when he goes to bed it is a bed time with a book. that is the rule. but at the table, it keeps him happy and occupied to read dr. suess electronically and we are okay with that. >> how do you stay in the
competition between that kind of book with a smile on the face and so on and the video games? most young people i see today are doing video games. >> that is an issue for the parents. not for us working in the arts, humanity and publishing. that is a parent thing. but the smaller and more efficient devices become as we grow technologically as a culture certainly the more distractions every device will have on it. bui think, you know, you and i can look back to the publishing industry crying about the bcr. and oh my god it is going to ruin the industry because people have these fat things they turn into a machine and will not read. every generation has a
bug-a-boo, but they commit to reading because it defines us culturally. >> the first thing i did around the house is restock the library and the best thing we had was to tie in with the bbc was they were doing jane austen and they suggested publishing "pride and prejudice" again. and why don't we publish everything of her's? and we sold out. and she was rediscovered thanks to the time of the tv. it is great. another point which i was discussing as a relationship between hollywood movies and literature recently with the
show time and michael lynch's films and michael sheen was arguing it is okay to depart from the literal truth of the book to create a dramatic emotional moment which intrigued be. >> i think all librarians can attest to the power of having poplar media take a book, right after a book is on television or the movies, there is a rush of people and they use the sneak away to say if you like this, try that. the other thing ambus -- ambassador myers -- >> just to stop you, the libr librarian has been an asset saying this is the book for you. >> that is the key in terms of having someone there. i was pleased to hear the
ambassador say librarians should not be defenses about reading is not optional. it is not optional. we need to just say that as librarians. when you have a many households you don't have that reading culture or people who are reading and to provide that opportunity for young people or grabbing them when they are 7-8 or beyond and providing an opportunity for the family to read together. we have a program called family reading circle using high quality picture book and the parents or caregivers share those with the young people. these are in transitional homes. all housing projects. things like that. most of the time the adults have very low literacy levels.
but these picture books give them an opportunity to share and not be ashamed they cannot read well and it turns into a discussion about the issue. >> how many people par t-- >> in baltimore we have 38% literacy rates. 10-5 percent are barely literate. when we look at technology as a way it is non-threatening in a sense but they are reading with these tools.
>> quite a few. >> the american library association is strong on this issue. we have adult literacy very high in the country, summerland immigration, some related to aa greater amount of dyslexia than we ever imagined. and so any substantial library does have a literacy program. >> we run the lay just -- the nation's largest literacy. >> we are two floors apart.
i am very fond of his wife. [laughter] my colleague. the endowments are so different in terms of the mission but utterly complementary. >> to be precise the national endowment for the arts is in the creativity. that means poetry, music, etc. and we have overlaps. >> programs we both funded. the vigor of you too. >> precisely the same in size. but --
>> they survive the culture wars. >> a fund to fight, what happens? >> first of all, we work together. we complement each other and complement each other in the facing off. that is, we advocate each other and have precisely the same funding level. the competition between us. both are fair circumstances. cancer as a whole are less well-funded than they were 30 years ago.
we picked out in 1979 on inflation, places about a 3rd of where we were in 1979. in terms of impact, we argue that we are quite vibrant. in fact, my institution, a billion word agency. we have precipitated over a billion words command that is a rather impressive circumstance. >> for those who don't no, the endowment in terms of literature. >> gray will press in minneapolis minnesota.
i know you have an international audience. in the states there is a tax designation which allows the publisher to be essentially charitable, thus it moves itself out of the commercial realm and is designated as nonprofit and doing work for the public good. charitable contributions to do this work. they tend to be publishers, high literary fiction. >> accidental nonprofit. >> no, but we do actually have a commitment. we fund fellowships through
individual writers. we spend about a million dollars year every other year in either poetry or prose allowing the rider comfort to go into the commercial market knowing that they can take a lower death. that too is a wonderful thing. when someone comes out of the process of funding translation it is more likely. a national endowment for the arts translation fellowship. we are fueling the commercial economy where writers lead from their work by supporting workshops by writers. i like to refer to as the literary ecosystem, and we are in it at some level or other. writers will move. we will find a small house in michigan to do the digital backlist of a lot of
writers who have fallen out of print because there is no value in that copyright. so we are in there fighting and playing we do peer-reviewed, so we look to the commercial world for their advice on where we are going in this knew digital realm so that we can use that advice to help her nonprofit. >> when i was at random house, jason epstein is one of the most distinguished editors, they invented the paperback. i spent more than i thought was reasonable, a lot of money. on this particular occasion it was about $300,000. after we are all dead.
and actually works. i had 12 books in the library association, 12 books, and i had seven of them. with my chairman about whether every book should be profitable. i said, it can't be done. library association must be good. tell me what profit they made. you're lost. $363,000 of those books. the thousand dollars of those books.
the best books. go away. goes to the new york times list and goes through the choices and came back and said, you've got 27 books in the new york times. that is the good news. the.is you published to that made a profit of 2 million. in terms of the book i'm going to say this in their defense. we can't make it work. surprise, surprise it occasionally does work. he gets back to the title of this talk just theoretical transition publishing to come to libraries, to come
to the aid of scholars. that investment by commercial publishers make will likely be smaller as the profits are smaller, as they are on digital books, as we see merger between places like england, as we see layoffs across the industry, as we see a lack of independent bookstores on main streets in america, as we see libraries fighting with their communities about space. and how to find money to go digital to help people. as we find that the arts are the 1st thing to be cut and scholarship is the 1st thing to be cut. we need to address what cultural institutions can do and how many of us need to carry the torch and get out
there and find more support through the field of literature and libraries and scholarship. like these, newspapers and the long answer is nothing like british investigative journalism i sort of felt uneasy about that. >> the federal agency that helps libraries, i am now less providing programs like the family circle as well as giving libraries the opportunity to have what we are calling out creation space, let people create their own. young people as well as adults.
turn our libraries into not just the place for consumption but also creation, and that has been helpful. they need to match public dollars. i grant that i mentioned that they are so proud of, the largest grant so far to a single library for e-books and e-readers was a call the publishers and everyone is upset that libraries will invest and will be supportive, just like they have. just comingjust coming together, the digital public library of america is another example of everyone participating and saying we will survive the digital age >> just out of curiosity i have been price issues between the publishers and libraries. digital books have been priced very high. can you tell me how that is going? >> it is bringing librarians back to being called but we were during a certain time,
feisty fighters for freedom. >> you said it, i didn't. they are basically saying we will, we are your partners, have always been your partners.partners. for people who cannot purchase bookstores, this wonderful book that is out now, 86 authors were talking about their favorite independent bookstore. we are the public university, the place that everyone can get these materials. it is important for librarians to make changes electronic resource librarians. starting to reflect that as well.
>> any ideas from other countries and how we can use other cultural institutions? have one example. they wrote the book called museum of innocents. i have not been there, but there, but my wife went into the museum of innocents, which is a building which is full of all the things mentioned in the novel, lipstick, and very, and people have been going in the shops mentioned in the book. these people and objects never existed.
all in the museum and it is complete fake. otherwise they go in there and turn on the reading his novel. >> wouldn't it be really wonderful that people could create what they saw in their minds in the book. they greatestthe greatest criticism when you see a movie that was made from a book, it is not what i thought it was like. so those creation stations. >> they have to loosen up a
little. >> there are analogies to movements for sure. i do not think any book has been published with someone in the private sector saying you put my candy bar in this book. we will pay you the publisher. they do that for movies. but there are lots. the product placement years ago. it was quite controversial. will wound up blowing back in her face. >> there are lots of talks about the nonprofit world lots of corporations that go on. in this room there here with the carnegie foundation. helping publishers putting out a muslim world bookshelf
in which they're will be 30 books on multicultural issues. as a nonprofit kind of cooperative effort with the government and with institutions of governance, which libraries are throughout the country. and so there is a lot of cooperative effort that does take place. and there are a lot of visuals that come to mind. my favorite example is -- comes from is on the pc. and she says that when she speaks she would say can you name an american president in the 19th century? and very few could comeau warranty my sale was lincoln. and then she says, can you
name an american literary thinker, all hands raised. they say mark twain. who is the bigger impact? a literary figure a political figure? very interesting. we think politics as aa society often the literature is the powerful, driving circumstance. >> the other institution does not mention, and all this assisted in putting advertising in the random house books. whether it be for pharmaceuticals, and yet when you take something like inflammation novel james bond, tested and are, what carter's james bond drive? the aston martin. of course you know. >> his last movie.
>> that is a famous british racing car. that is in the book. but if i was offered aston martin advertisement when i published, ian fleming used to work on my newspaper. and what is wrong with that? >> i don't think you were yet in the states when the agents actually banned advertising. it was mass market paperback. and you can find them in used bookstores this still have marriage cigarette ads in the back, and there was, in fact, advertising which defended many writers. there isthere is a know as cloud, you may recall which exists throughout. with that has turned into his, there is corporate sponsorship of book launches. you will find corporate partners. i