An account of the unexpected ways in which those who read books have actually shaped the development of literature through the ages. The history of reading is traced from the earliest examples of Egyptian heiroglyphics, dating back 6000 years to the present day.
Alberto Manguel traces the history of reading from the earliest examples of Egyptian heiroglyphics, dating back 6000 years, through to the present day. He argues that it is the demands and expectations of the reader, rather than the creative will of the writer, that is of primary importance in the evolution of literary forms and genres. From man's first use of the written word simply as a form of reference, to the emergence of the first holy or devotional texts, and on to the development of fictions, both poetic and novelistic, this work should amuse, challenge and enlighten.