Britain's First Talking Book Library for Blind People.
03 Oct 2017, 17:30 to 03 Oct 2017, 19:30
History of Libraries
Warburg Institute, Woburn Square, London WC1H 0AB
Professor Matthew Rubery , Queen Mary University of London
Britain’s first Talking Book Library for blind people was established in 1935 to provide reading material for war-blinded soldiers who could not read braille. Its talking books consisted of specially modified gramophone records containing recitations of the Bible, Shakespeare, popular fiction, and more. Drawing on archives held by the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and Blind Veterans UK, this presentation traces the library’s development from the initial experiments after the War to its reception among blind civilians, and, soon after, a series of controversies over taste, obscenity, and censorship.
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