Thursday, December 15, 2011

Paris' legendary American bookseller dies

George Whitman, has passed away. A lot of you may ask, 'Who the heck is George Whitman?" Well, you may not know his name, but you probably have heard of his bookshop. He owned the world famous bookshop located in Paris, Shakespeare & Company. Whitman started the shop in 1951. This was during the time period when a number of Americans went to Paris after World War II to "re-start the party." By the mid 1950's, it was obvious that the party was over and most Americans went home to the states. But, Whitman did not. Whitman named his bookstore Shakespeare & Company in memory of Sylvia Beach, an American women who also had a bookstore named Shakespeare & Company that she was eventually forced to close. Everyone in Paris knows Whitman's bookshop, and he will be remembered for a long time to come.

The author of this article, Michael Goldfarb, definitely respects George Whitman. Even though Goldfarb did not have the best personal experience with Whitman, he still respects the man. He says, "By the time I made my first visits there 40 years ago, the bookshop was an anchor of Paris life and Whitman a well-established character: wizened, missing his front teeth, their absence highlighted by his wispy goatee." Goldfarb succeeded in interesting me in the topic and makes me want to know more about George Whitman. 

Click here to view the article


  1. George Whitman seems like an interesting man. I like how your author relates to his personal experiences with Whitman. Nice job!

  2. That is very sad. He had a large influence on the reading world