At the beginning of this exercise I wasn’t quite sure, if I really could get friends with a book, I couldn’t choose myself, especially as it was an old one. Eventually the problem was, that I came directly from high school where I always had to read book, I wasn’t interested in. Luckily, I’ve got a book which is written in English, what made it a lot easier to relate to the book. My book hasn’t got a lot of text, actually just a short introduction to the 150 plates which is the heart of the book. The plates show selected building and ornament in England, which are skillfully made in the eyes of James Gibbs, the author of the book. It was interesting to go through the book and look at the copper engravings, especially when I had the big old book in my hands at the Oechslin library in Einsiedeln. I was quite surprised by the accuracy of the presented drawings.
Unfortunately, I didn’t learn a lot from the book. Possibly it was because I didn’t invest enough time to get close enough with my friend, because I had a lot of other things where I put my time and interest in and it was a question of priority. Eventually the reason was the small amount of text, which was in fact like a letter from James Gibbs to the Duke of Argyll and Greenwich. It just seemed to me like a collection of drawings to look at and not like a book which is very educational.
I think my favorite task of the whole project was task 2. It’s not because of the video and unfortunately, we didn’t have a lot of time at the Oechslin library, but I enjoyed the experience of having such an old and big book in my hand, which was actually new to me. I think that was the most important task for my relationship to my book, even when it was a large time requirement in order to look at the book for just about 15 minutes.
Task 3 and 4 didn’t really have an additional value to me. It was just kind of a task I did so that it was done, but I think especially task 4 was interesting for you and crucial for task 5. On the other hand, I liked part 1 of task 5 because I was able to get to know something about the books of other students.
All in all, looking back, I think “Friends with an old book” was an interesting experience, but there is certainly some potential to make the task more attractive. I think the interaction between the books should have a bigger value, because that is where the interesting stuff happens. From my point of view, it would be more attractive if you find a way for the students to get to know the book faster so there is more time left for an interaction and conversation between the books (not only the last weeks in the semester).