Politics, Foreign Policy, Current Events and Occasional Outbursts Lacking Couth

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The Quantum Library

Zenpundit has sent an invitation for us to disclose our Quantum Library. If our Library entails the books we've read and our Anti-library's make up are all the books we've yet to read then what is the Quantum Library? From the Innovationist's Three Hierarchical Layers of Books:

The Quantum-Library is the layer that co-exists as a member of both the Library and the Anti-Library. It is something you may have read, but when read again with a different perspective it exists in another form. These type’s of books are the ultimate for a bibliophile.

An interesting concept and I'd encourage all to give the post a read in it's entirety.

There are plenty of books that I've read multiple times, simply because they're that good. However few exist that when re-read are so deep as to invite this quantum shift in perspective and form as described above and so my list is a bit short:

The Art of War


Enders Game

Natures End

Atlas Shrugged


Like I said, it's a bit short. I suspect if Munz posts his it will be longer given his proclivity for some rather deep reading subjects.


Jay@Soob said...

heh. edited this to add atlas shrugged. how the hell could I have forgotten that one?

Jay@Soob said...

yep, the more I think about it the more I'll likely be adding to this list.

Jeff Wills said...

Interesting, because most good books I re-read years later I end up seeing them a little differently. Age and perspective does that. Now major shifts from re-reading years later, these come to mind:

Plato's dialogues
The Great Gatsby
Shakespeares Tragedies
Mark Twain's Autobiography

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the list, Soob.

I have a feeling as much as I have been suggested to read Atlas Shrugged and 1984, they would be in my list also. I'll keep an eye on the blog to see if Munzenberg put's his up. Going to check out the rest of your blog.

G said...

I only have a couple of books I read over and over and find new stuff in (maybe if I read more over and over, I'd find others).

Robert Greene's 48 Laws of Power

Robert Henri's The Art Spirit

Tolstoy's Confessions

Robert Shattuck's Forbidden Knowledge

I'd also add Taleb's Black Swan. I think if I read that again I'll see more stuff in it. I'm reading Braudel's Civilization and Capitalism (vol 1) as well, and it has heaps of stuff I missed out on and also having new perspectives on. So that may be on the list in the future.

Anonymous said...

I'm in agreement with Purpleslog, the Quantum Library should be a very elite list of books. Too many in your Anti-Library to go back much.

How could you ever forget Atlas Shrugged? haha

Jay@Soob said...

I'd add Black Swan as well, but it's on loan and so I haven't had a chance to re-read it.

James, great post on the hierarchical layer of books.

Jeff, one of these years I'll get around to finally reading the Great Gatsby.

munz, a surprisingly short list but then given the rapidity and volume in which you read it makes sense.

glenn, yep not sure how that one got forgotten. Perhaps because it, unlike some of the others, isn't falling apart. Some books I have literally read to death. I am an unkind and very demanding dictator in my library.

Jeff Kouba said...

Hmm, yeah, an interesting way to try and quantify a book. Here are a few that took on new meaning after my perspective had changed for whatever reason.

Book of Lamentations (Old Testament): It became a different book reading it as a description of conditions after Judah was invaded and dismantled.

Catch-22: One of the funniest books I've read. Took on new meaning when I began to realize that instead of being pure fiction, it reflected the absurdities of war.

Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness: the image of the gunboat firing shells that were merely swallowed up by the African jungle has become one of my favorite metaphors for the difficulty/futility of trying to move something as large as a country or continent.

Ymarsakar said...

I just finished Shogun, thanks for the recommendation.

Sean Meade said...

wish i could include Shogun, but i've only read it once.

getting ready to post my list...