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October 20, 1900


JAMA. 1900;XXXV(16):1033. doi:10.1001/jama.1900.02460420047010

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A majority of the book reviews nowadays are favorable. This has led to the statement that literary magazines are "publishers' organs." To this charge the Chicago Sunday Tribune for September 30 makes answer. It admits the truth of the statement in the opening line. "The contrast with the slashing of the Edinburgh Review is indeed marked, but it by no means follows that the book reviews of the present time are any more a failure than those which flayed Shelley or drove Keats to an early grave." The conditions in the book market are such that but a fraction of the books published can be reviewed, and hence the tendency to select for review chiefly the books worthy of praise, the inferior productions simply being ignored. And then personal animosity and political prejudice no longer play any such part in the reviewing of books as they did a century ago—and

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