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The High Price Of Academic Text Books A Way To Stop The Proles From Reading Them?

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Money in the Pre-Industrial World: Bullion, Debasements and Coin Substitutes (Financial History)

Fountain of Fortune: Money and Monetary Policy in China, 1000-1700

I fancy reading both of these books, however they are ridiculously expensive I'm guessing because so few copies will be printed, but then because of the price few copies will be sold.

Knowledge has always been hidden by the elites from the masses either by language ie the bible written in and spoken in Latin meaning for the majority they couldn't understand it without it being interpreted by priests. Even when books where widespread published the majority couldn't read.

Now the high priests of knowledge keep people out of the loop with high prices. To purchase both books would be around £100.

I know the local University doesn't have these books so I doubt the local library would either.

Should people be priced out of knowledge?

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Money in the Pre-Industrial World: Bullion, Debasements and Coin Substitutes (Financial History)

Fountain of Fortune: Money and Monetary Policy in China, 1000-1700

I fancy reading both of these books, however they are ridiculously expensive I'm guessing because so few copies will be printed, but then because of the price few copies will be sold.

Knowledge has always been hidden by the elites from the masses either by language ie the bible written in and spoken in Latin meaning for the majority they couldn't understand it without it being interpreted by priests. Even when books where widespread published the majority couldn't read.

Now the high priests of knowledge keep people out of the loop with high prices. To purchase both books would be around £100.

I know the local University doesn't have these books so I doubt the local library would either.

Should people be priced out of knowledge?

Ebay for the second one, is it the same one, £41.40 delivered:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Fountain-of-Fortune-9780520204089-by-Richard-Von-Glahn-HardCover-BRAND-NEW-/111065692181?pt=Non_Fiction&hash=item19dc07f815

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Small run academic books have always been expensive, I've just checked mine on charter bounds and it's marked at £40.

Relative to some other books I suppose... but a day visit to Legoland would cost far more than that and a Cinema ticket would cost about 1/3 of that for 2 hours of fun vs the book that gives weeks of fun.

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If it isn't a technical/professional academic book (mainstream finance, IT ' management etc) then doubt you could sell it on afterwards for what you bought it for, the high prices are deceiving in that respect.

Would suggest you ask your local and university libraries if they can get an inter library loan for you

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Money in the Pre-Industrial World: Bullion, Debasements and Coin Substitutes (Financial History)

Fountain of Fortune: Money and Monetary Policy in China, 1000-1700

I fancy reading both of these books, however they are ridiculously expensive I'm guessing because so few copies will be printed, but then because of the price few copies will be sold.

Knowledge has always been hidden by the elites from the masses either by language ie the bible written in and spoken in Latin meaning for the majority they couldn't understand it without it being interpreted by priests. Even when books where widespread published the majority couldn't read.

Now the high priests of knowledge keep people out of the loop with high prices. To purchase both books would be around £100.

I know the local University doesn't have these books so I doubt the local library would either.

Should people be priced out of knowledge?

+1

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https://www.khanacademy.org/ - This is the future of education, IMO. Teachers working in combination with such technology would result in more time for tuition, with each pupil moving more closely to their own pace.

Then consider what free/cheap content can be found on the net alone. Many blogs, academic papers and so forth, often published for free. I suspect as Bitcoin (et al) start to gain more traction, small payments will become common place (i.e. it isn't swallowed up in bankster fees).

While these specialist books still have value, I suspect it is lessening with each year.

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I have a monograph coming out with Palgrave Macmillan in September: hardback and e-book (e-book licence for institutional libraries - not for sale to the public) only, at £55. My contract states that if it sells 500 copies in the first year (on which I'll receive a royalty of about 75p a copy), they'll consider a paperback run.

The business model for academic monographs (in the humanities at least: not so familiar with sciences and social sciences) is that unless it's on a 'sexy' topic (which usually means something to do with feminism and/or the Nazis) that has popular appeal, the expectation is that only institutional libraries will buy it, and their price is set in order to recover the publisher's costs and turn a profit on the basis of selling a few hundred copies to the aforementioned libraries.

What really annoys me is how little the publisher does for that income. I have to clear the copyright for all quotes (from published works in copyright, where the quote is over 15 words) and illustrations, provide the MS formatted to their house style exactly (not a small job: I like writing with footnotes, and therefore had to convert 728 of them to Harvard references afterwards), turn the copyedited files and proofs around in a ridiculously short timescale, and then compile the index on the basis of their PDFs. I even had to provide the front cover illustration, copyright cleared! Then I had to write all the marketing copy, chapter abstracts etc. Basically, all they did was tohave a peer reviewer read it (who will have been 'paid' with a few freebie books, i.e. a cost of zero to the publisher), put a page on their website for the book, have a lawyer check the MS for libel issues (not much of a check needed for a book dealing with political history in the 1920s, the protagonists of whom are all dead) and send it to the printers. I only get one copy of the finished book myself, and my department actually has to buy one for submission in the REF.

If it sells those 500 copies, they'll make £27,500, and I'll get around £375 in royalties. I can't see how their expenses in producing and distributing it can have been more than £5-6k. I can't really complain about the tiny royalties, because I was being paid a salary by a university to research and write the thing (my contract allocates 40% of my time to research). That having been said, academics who write undergrad textbooks that sell in the tens of thousands have no problem trousering the royalties.

I have given complete printouts of the proof PDFs to my students (of this and my two other monographs), and will continue to do so where appropriate: after all, their fees helped to pay for me to research and write it.

Edited by The Ayatollah Buggeri

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As Si1 suggested, you can probably get this through some sort of inter library loan.

Academic books are printed in low volume in general unless you are looking at undergraduate course textbooks that get established, like maybe Atkins for Physical Chemistry.

All the people I know who have been asked to write told me it wasn't worth the effort in terms of revenue, but of course it can help make your name in a field, especially if you get there first. Very few academic books are money makers.

If you know the authors personally then normally they get a pile of copies for their own use that they are normally happy to sell on !

I don't think there is really a concerted effort to keep this stuff out of the hands of the proles. The books are just expensive because they are specialist. This is true of pretty much anything.

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There is no substitute for a printed book.

All pupils should receive all the books they need - 1 copy for every child.

Electronic sources are NOT the same and never will be.

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I have a monograph coming out with Palgrave Macmillan in September: hardback and e-book (e-book licence for institutional libraries - not for sale to the public) only, at £55. My contract states that if it sells 500 copies in the first year (on which I'll receive a royalty of about 75p a copy), they'll consider a paperback run.

The business model for academic monographs (in the humanities at least: not so familiar with sciences and social sciences) is that unless it's on a 'sexy' topic (which usually means something to do with feminism and/or the Nazis) that has popular appeal, the expectation is that only institutional libraries will buy it, and their price is set in order to recover the publisher's costs and turn a profit on the basis of selling a few hundred copies to the aforementioned libraries.

What really annoys me is how little the publisher does for that income. I have to clear the copyright for all quotes (from published works in copyright, where the quote is over 15 words) and illustrations, provide the MS formatted to their house style exactly (not a small job: I like writing with footnotes, and therefore had to convert 728 of them to Harvard references afterwards), turn the copyedited files and proofs around in a ridiculously short timescale, and then compile the index on the basis of their PDFs. I even had to provide the front cover illustration, copyright cleared! Then I had to write all the marketing copy, chapter abstracts etc. Basically, all they did was tohave a peer reviewer read it (who will have been 'paid' with a few freebie books, i.e. a cost of zero to the publisher), put a page on their website for the book, have a lawyer check the MS for libel issues (not much of a check needed for a book dealing with political history in the 1920s, the protagonists of whom are all dead) and send it to the printers. I only get one copy of the finished book myself, and my department actually has to buy one for submission in the REF.

If it sells those 500 copies, they'll make £27,500, and I'll get around £375 in royalties. I can't see how their expenses in producing and distributing it can have been more than £5-6k. I can't really complain about the tiny royalties, because I was being paid a salary by a university to research and write the thing (my contract allocates 40% of my time to research). That having been said, academics who write undergrad textbooks that sell in the tens of thousands have no problem trousering the royalties.

I have given complete printouts of the proof PDFs to my students (of this and my two other monographs), and will continue to do so where appropriate: after all, their fees helped to pay for me to research and write it.

Cheers, very interesting to read the inside version. It does sound a bit like Ed Reardon!

I didn't think Della Hooke was making much money out of the £40 I was paying for her book but I didn't realise how small her return actually was for the work she put into it :(

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There is no substitute for a printed book.

All pupils should receive all the books they need - 1 copy for every child.

Electronic sources are NOT the same and never will be.

That's only because you are used to reading books. If you had spent your whole life reading from an e-reader then your opinion might be different.

I don't have an ereader but I guess the quality is not up to academic books yet, but maybe in 5-10 years it will be.

The problem with textbooks for kids as any teacher will tell you is that the kids trash them, so they only last a few years and then have to be replaced at enormous cost.

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That's only because you are used to reading books. If you had spent your whole life reading from an e-reader then your opinion might be different.

This is all getting very '1984' here. You're right of course - if they bring children up so that they haven't even seen a text book they won't know what they are missing. And who knows what content will be changed once hard copies are removed/destroyed? And how would one check if no hard copies exist?

Doubtless there will be a Ministry of Truth to help us.

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This is all getting very '1984' here. You're right of course - if they bring children up so that they haven't even seen a text book they won't know what they are missing. And who knows what content will be changed once hard copies are removed/destroyed? And how would one check if no hard copies exist?

Doubtless there will be a Ministry of Truth to help us.

So you are arguing books have never been rewritten ?

People can always save a copy of a file in the same way they can archive a book.

Your "1984" is my "Tin foil hat". If you show kids a slide rule they won't know what that is either. Some would argue that's a technological progression.

Edit : Ebooks actually have the potential to allow the greatest level of learning in history. Kids in africa who can't get their hands on normal books will be able to get hold of pdfs. Wide distribution of information. And wide distribution of information is the best weapon against authority control.

Edited by Gigantic Purple Slug

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People can always save a copy of a file in the same way they can archive a book.

With every device on the planet subject to being hacked into by the NSA (or some other agency)?

And what will happen when someone uses an EMP device in the upper atmosphere? And what will happen if we get a massive solar flare/wave? All the electronic data will be wiped. Gone for ever.

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wide distribution of information is the best weapon against authority control.

You would think, yes, but it doesn't seem to be working - hence the massive spying centres in the US/UK and unprecedented moves towards total control of the population.

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So you are arguing books have never been rewritten ?

People can always save a copy of a file in the same way they can archive a book.

Your "1984" is my "Tin foil hat". If you show kids a slide rule they won't know what that is either. Some would argue that's a technological progression.

Edit : Ebooks actually have the potential to allow the greatest level of learning in history. Kids in africa who can't get their hands on normal books will be able to get hold of pdfs. Wide distribution of information. And wide distribution of information is the best weapon against authority control.

Do you know about the kindle 1984 incident?

Amazon remotely deleted 1984 and Animal Farm from the kindles of users who had purchased the books.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/18/technology/companies/18amazon.html?_r=0

Edit to add: It's hilarious when you think about it. Imagine you're half way through 1984 and somebody sends your copy down the memory hole

Edited by SpectrumFX

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Do you know about the kindle 1984 incident?

Amazon remotely deleted 1984 and Animal Farm from the kindles of users who had purchased the books.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/18/technology/companies/18amazon.html?_r=0

All I can say is good luck with their ability to delete the DVD's that all my stuff is burnt onto. And they are solar flare proof as well.

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All I can say is good luck with their ability to delete the DVD's that all my stuff is burnt onto. And they are solar flare proof as well.

All well and good for you, but what happens when the youngsters only get the edited versions of the books in the first place? They already took ****** and injun out of huck fin

http://mobile.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/blogs/the_angle/2011/01/new_edition_of

Edit to add: I can't even write it here without being automaticaly edited.

Edited by SpectrumFX

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  • 238 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
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      • up 5%



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