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The Good Book Business


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Interesting article on the Bible publishing business. Learn about their growing comfort with commercialization (“Different kinds of packaging can always be seen by true believers as having an evangelical utility. If it helps reach people with the Word, then it’s not bad. You can consecrate the market.”); facts on formal equivalence translation vs. functional equivalence ("A literal translation of God’s words to straying Israelites in Amos 4:6 reads, “I gave you cleanness of teeth.” The New International Version eliminates the potential misreading that God was punishing the wicked with dental hygiene, and translates the phrase as “I gave you empty stomachs.” "); how there is more to developing new translations than just the desire to spread the gospel ("Kenneth Barker...told me that he doesn’t think a new version will be needed for at least twenty-five years, but he doubts there will be such a long break. “We like to think that the motivation is all holy and pure,” he told me, “but finances do enter the picture, and publishers and Bible societies like to have their slice of the pie.” "); and how new Bibles are being developed to appeal to certain groups, such as BibleZine (“She brought in a variety of teen-girl magazines and threw them out on the table,” he recalled. “And then she threw a black bonded-leather Bible on the table and said, ‘Which would you rather read if you were sixteen years old?’ ” The result was “Revolve,” a New Testament that looked indistinguishable from a glossy girls’ magazine."), and The Personal Promise Bible ("custom-printed with the owner’s name (“The LORD is Daniel’s shepherd”), home town (“Woe to you, Brooklyn! Woe to you, New York!”), and spouse’s name (“Gina’s two breasts are like two fawns”)" ).

 

http://www.newyorker.com/printables/fact/061218fa_fact1

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I went to an office supply store today. In the computer software section some of the more expensive software had anti-theft devices on them. All of the bible programs, even the cheap ones, had anti-theft devices on them.

 

What's even more sickening was that next door to this store was a HUGE christian store and coffee bar. It gave me the chills just driving by it.

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Let me tell you... that marketing worked on me as a high schooler. I had a job and expendable income, and a new Bible fetish. I had at least 8 Bibles. The Student Bible (in two versions), the Life Application Bible, the Woman's Bible, and portable versions and all different kinds of carrying cases. I think I went a little overboard. ;)

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