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Sunday, August 12, 2018

Tsundoku: The art of buying books and never reading them | BBC

Do you have a habit of picking up books that you never quite get around to reading?

If this sounds like you, you might be unwittingly engaging in tsundoku - a Japanese term used to describe a person who owns a lot of unread literature.

Does this sight look familiar to you? 
Photo: Getty Images

Prof Andrew Gerstle teaches pre-modern Japanese texts at the University of London.

He explained to the BBC the term might be older than you think - it can be found in print as early as 1879, meaning it was likely in use before that.

The word "doku" can be used as a verb to mean "reading". According to Prof Gerstle, the "tsun" in "tsundoku" originates in "tsumu" - a word meaning "to pile up".

So when put together, "tsundoku" has the meaning of buying reading material and piling it up. 
Read more... 

Additional resources
 
Photo: Massimo Listri/Taschen

Where the world’s memory is stored by Cameron Laux.
A new book celebrates some of the world’s most beautiful libraries, with many of its entries in Europe. Cameron Laux looks at how they have carried knowledge through the ages, surviving 10th-Century raids – and looting by a 21st-Century crime ring.  

Source: BBC


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