The Library of Congress is having a party, and we’re all invited. It’s called “Celebration of the Book,” and it’s going to last for a couple of years. The party just got started with an exhibition called “Books That Shaped America,” which, being in Washington D.C., is not all that interesting to us.
BUT here’s how we can participate. “This list of ‘Books That Shaped America’ is a starting point. It is not a register of the ‘best’ American books–although many of them fit that description. Rather, the list is intended to spark a national conversation on books written by Americans that have influenced our lives, whether they appear on this initial list or not,” said Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. “We hope people will view the list and then nominate other titles. Finally, we hope people will choose to read and discuss some of the books on this list, reflecting our nation’s unique and extraordinary literary heritage, which the Library of Congress makes available to the world.”
It’s a fun list to look at and ponder. How did The Legend of Sleepy Hollow shape America? How about Our Bodies, Ourselves? Take a look and tell us: what books would you add or subtract to the list? Don’t forget to tell the Library of Congress, too, by taking their survey.