Enhanced eBooks and One Art Historian (Chronicle of Higher Education)

In the Chronicle of Higher Education‘s opinion section, art historian Jacob L. Wright advocates for print and enhanced ebook publication. Fascinating perspective, although I dread the consistency issues–not to mention the fairly serious issues around a self-designed book being published on a proprietary platform without consulting preservation experts:

My book was produced in two forms. One version is in paperback, hardback, and a traditional e-book format, while the other is a fully enhanced version that I produced myself, using Appleā€™s iBooks Author program…. (The Cambridge Press version, which bears a different title, includes three additional chapters on the relationship between David and Caleb.) …. In the enhanced e-book version, I reconstruct the history of the biblical text alongside a wide selection of striking images [and linked documents]. Without leaving the page, the reader can study the layered history of the text alongside artistic interpretations spanning millennia, along with a bit of contemporary kitsch. The juxtaposition sparks the imagination in new ways.

I love what the scholar is doing for his students and colleagues, but I’m troubled that he locked-in all this content with Apple’s iBooks platform. The comments on this article are worth checking for alternatives to Apple’s iBooks. Read the article. (May be paywalled.)

By Paul Romaine

Paul Romaine is a grant writer and independent curator in New York City.

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