Hails to the e-Real

Browsing in the card catalogues of libraries always fascinated me for two reasons; firstly, the excitement of finding the book I eagerly wanted to read, which could easily lead to the disappointment of the item’s unavailability, and, secondly, the opportunity of coming across other interesting titles/authors. As a high school student, I discovered many titles, which up to this day, remain among the best influential books I have ever read.

University libraries opened new horizons into my life with the whole range of titles and authors they offered. I always loved the smell of the old books and the untouched sheets of the new. However, with the growth of the interest as well as the need for the e-books and online libraries, I started missing the “real libraries” as I call them.

I always enjoyed browsing the databases to which I was given access; still, I missed the scent of the dust on the books. Years passed; I widely used and read e-books, I never reconciled with the idea of the e-books and e-libraries though.

A couple of days ago, over a weekend, I started searching based on key words in the e-references to which my university provided me with access. I started at 10 AM and by the time I made myself feel that I am done, it was already past 2 PM. At this time, I was enjoying a strange kind of satisfaction; as if I have been really walking in “real libraries” not “virtual libraries”. That epiphanic moment happened: when the virtual became more actual than the “real” itself. I was beforehand grateful for all the e-resources and journals, but not a real believer in them. If I was to choose between the e-book and the hard-copy, I would definitely go for the latter.

The irony lies in the fact that I have been contributing to the promising Parsagon e-journal. I believed that Parsagon will thrive sooner or later but now I have trust in it more than before.

So, this month, I invite you, with a stringer faith, to stay tuned to our August edition which features Goli Taraghi’s profile …..

About Mahboube Khalvati 12 Articles
Mahboube Khalvati is a PhD Candidate in English Literature at UNISA.

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