On October 10, 1896, The New York Times published the first issue of the Book Review, and this year, the Book Review turns 125 years old.
The New York Times has published an interactive history of the Book Review to reflect on the past 125 years of publications, starting with the first publication in 1896 and ending with a review as recent as November 2020. In this article, they highlight some of the books that they have reviewed throughout their history, such as Call of the Wild, The Great Gatsby, The Grapes of Wrath, Invisible Man, and White Teeth.
The New York Times Book Review covered many social and political issues as well. They used literature to show the evolution of social movements and amplify diverse voices. Most recently, in 2002, the Book Review featured poems from Claudia Rankine and Jericho Brown that discussed the pandemic and the murder of George Floyd.
“Yet as the Book Review has evolved, our country and world have evolved with it. Our pages reflect and reinterpret the happenings of the day, offering insight — and often, levity — through reviews, essays and news items… very often, history was made in our pages. We highlight here just a few of these moments, from landmark reviews to author scandals to moments of protest and recognition.”
featured image via the new york times