Simon Browne

see also bootlegging, diversifying through use, multiplying form

Samizdat publishers considered a printed text to be officially published if it came in an edition of at least 5 copies. The library considers this to be excessive, and reduces that number to 1. One copy of a text can be shared and enriched by the accumulated annotations of many readers. A one-to-many-publishing model distributes texts to the widest possible public. The library instead insists on a many-to-one model, drawing many readers to one text. Republishing the one text many times creates a multiplicity of form, and subsequently a multiplicity of publics in each instance.

Image: Staff working at Publication Studio, London.1

  1. Publication Studio is a federated publishing network with studios located worldwide. Books ordered from the shared catalog are printed and bound one-at-a-time by the closest studio. Differences in availability of paper and machinery at each studio means that the materiality of each instance of a printed text will vary depending on where and how the books are made.