Scenario: Library on Fire?

I am sitting in Dartmouth’s library writing an essay when all of a sudden a fire breaks out. Firefighters run into the building and order everyone to evacuate the premises. It is clear that the building will be demolished by the flames and that there is no chance to save all of the books and readings that are stored within the library’s reserves.

In an effort to save a piece of literature, I quickly go to the reserves in Dartmouth’s library and run out with Shakespeare’s First Folio in my hands. Shakespeare’s First Folio has a lot of meaning to me and many people across the globe. There are only 234 of them left in the world and inside of this book contains 36 of Shakespeare’s plays.

It is easy for anyone to access an online version of a book after it is scanned. One pro to this is that one has ease of access in terms of reading this piece of literature from any location. A reader garners close to no personal growth from reading virtual text online due to the lack of “feel” that is associated with doing so. By not being able to interact with the physical play book, the reader does not get to experience the feel of history behind the plays or its priceless worth. When a reader turns through the pages of this historic book from the 1600s, the reader is able to feel the crisp turn of the papers, experience the aroma of aging leather and engage with the script as the turn of one page to another relays a sharp snap of the ancient book’s spine.

Many of the plays in Shakespeare’s First Folio are known by students around the world. From these plays readers are able to experience the culture and act out the satirical references that Shakespeare alludes to in his scripts.Thus, it is important to preserve physical copies of literature especially when they are priceless and limited in order for future generations to experience the authentic feel and experience of reading through ancient text.