Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Over the Counter #462

What book caught my eye this week as it passed over the library counter and under my scanner? Well, it's more snow than rain in my part of the world right now...

Brolliology: A History of the Umbrella in Life and Literature Hardcover by Marion Rankine.

From Melville House Books:

"Humans have been making, using, perfecting, and decorating umbrellas for millennia — holding them over the heads of rulers, signalling class distinctions, and exploring their full imaginative potential in folk tales and novels.

In the spirit of the best literary gift books, Brolliology is a beautifully designed and illustrated tour through literature and history. It surprises us with the crucial role that the oft-overlooked umbrella has played over centuries — and not just in keeping us dry. Marion Rankine elevates the umbrella to its rightful place as an object worthy of philosophical inquiry.

As Rankine points out, many others have tried. Derrida sought to find the meaning (or lack thereof) behind an umbrella mentioned in Nietzsche’s notes, Robert Louis Stevenson wrote essays on the handy object, and Dickens used umbrellas as a narrative device for just about everything. She tackles the gender, class, and social connotations of carrying an umbrella and helps us realize our deep connection to this most forgettable everyday object — which we only think of when we don’t have one."

(Over the Counter is a regular feature at A Bookworm's World. I've sadly come the realization that I cannot physically read every book that catches my interest as it crosses over my counter at the library. But... I can mention them and maybe one of them will catch your eye as well. See if your local library has them on their shelves!)


Icewineanne said...

Always love a beautiful umbrella. I personally own 12. Looking forward to reading this book.

Vicki said...

I love umbrella's and have a bunch of them in the house, in my car, and even at work. I bet this book would be interesting.

Luanne said...

Icewineanne and Vicki - you two should compare pics!