Although this collection isn’t about games, it is an interesting narrative revealed through web browsing. In particular, this passage is striking in the context of non-linear narrrative and a kind of wayfinding through information:

“This particular collection of books was the outcome of a series of escalating searches on the World Wide Web. Deploying a search term like “oil,” “Arab,” or “Middle East” returned an unmanageable array of books — but adding an additional search term would narrow the field in telling ways. Books about oil before 1973 that cost less than five dollars are few and almost entirely in hardcover, usually technical guides written for a specialized audience. After 1973, the same search yields a completely different array: in hardcover, hundreds of books about the coming oil crisis, rampant Arab wealth and influence, global bankruptcy, impending world war, and biblical Armageddon. At the same time, in paperback, the terrorist novel is born, and its brood is legion — cover after cover depicting vintage special agents, Israeli commandos, vigilante lone wolves, soldiers of fortune, and even a black samurai, each karate-kicking djellaba’d sheikhs beside burning oil rigs, often after sampling the delicacies of the inevitable harem. A similar set of searches substituting “Iran” for “Arab” produced its own assortment of types and stereotypes. We wanted to see what would happen if we put together a library without regard to aptness or excellence; if we chose books not for their subjects, but their contexts; not for their authors, but their publishers; not for their qualities, but in their quantities.”

To read more visit Browser, beware: Bidoun 22: LIBRARY

The story that unfolds after this is an intriguing collection of varied media -

The Cold War produced publishing ventures across the globe. Post-revolutionary Cuba became for a time a hotbed of avant-garde publishing, sponsoring the Afro-Asian-American journal Tricontinental, which included foldout posters promoting a solidarity-of-the-month club with oppressed guerrilla movements the world over. Copies were door-dropped on college campuses across the Third World, including Beirut, where Bidoun acquired some thirty-odd copies for fifty cents each. In “Revolution by Design,” Babak Radboy considers the aesthetic legacy of Tricontinental and its visionary art director, Alfredo Rostgaard.

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