LoC's "Books That Shaped America"


It's summer, it's a Friday, why not get way over-invested in arguing over a list?

The Library of Congress, the world’s largest repository of knowledge and information, began a multiyear “Celebration of the Book” with an exhibition on “Books That Shaped America.” The initial books in the exhibition are displayed below.

“This list is a starting point,” said Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. “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.”

My initial reactions:

  • Why only one book after 1987?
  • Where is Dr. Atkins's diet book? Think of the influence that one diet book, originally published in the 1970s, had and still has about how America eats.