Ever since the Internet first heaved into the public consciousness in the mid-1990s, it has prompted occasional broadsides from writers who have argued the network poses a mortal threat to traditional literary values. Early Internet Cassandras like Sven Birkerts and Clifford Stoll paved the way for more recent skeptics like Lee Siegel and Andrew Keen, all of whom have collectively demonstrated the paradox that for all its putative threats to the culture of the book, the Internet turns out to be a nearly perfect rhetorical foil for selling books... over the Internet. Over the last few years, Nicholas Carr…
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