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Over 100,000 Banned Books used to create full sized Parthenon

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Over 100,000 Banned Books used to create full sized Parthenon

100,000 banned books used to create life-sized Parthenon where Nazis once burned texts.

An Artist uses 100,000 banned books to build a full-sized Parthenon at a former Nazi book burning site. The installation is part of Kassel’s Documenta 14 art festival in Germany.

Artist Marta Minujín, 74, has been calling on people to donate books from a list of banned titles and says that the installation is ‘a symbol of opposition to the banning of writings and the persecution of their authors’.

The Parthenon of Books stands on the spot where the Nazis burned 2,000 books back in 1933 as part of their ‘Aktion wider den undeutschen Geise ‘Campaign against the Un-German Spirit’, which saw books by Jewish authors and those who were actively against fascist ideals being destroyed.

Eight years later, the Fridericianum, a library on the site, was set alight during an Allied bombing attack and another 350,000 books were burned to cinders.

Over 100,000 Banned Books used to create full sized Parthenon

Marta enlisted the help of a number of Kassel University students in identifying over 170 titles that were or are banned in different countries around the world and together, managed to build a replica of the ancient Greek temple using books, plastic sheeting and steel.

Titles like Fahrenheit 451, Don Quixote, The Da Vinci Code and Harry Potter have all been used to build the literary temple. One title you won’t find here, however, is Mein Kampf.

The Acropolis is a symbol of the aesthetic and political ideals of the world’s first democracy – a society of great learning, thought and philosophy.

Back in 1983 – just after the fall of the civilian-military dictatorship in Argentina, she created El Partenón de libros.
That was made from the books that had been banned by the ruling junta and after five days, the installation was tipped slightly to one side by two cranes and visitors were invited to pick a one-verboten book to take home.

With hundreds of titles that you didn’t know were still banned in various countries.

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