Thursday, May 22, 2008

"A museum come to life"

Mike Powell, nice, on Ghost Box, at Pitchfork.

Reminded me that the other week I had for some reason suddenly remembered a periodicial whose existence I'd completely forgot, a publication that fits the GB universe as perfectly as Penguins/Pelicans/Peregrines and polytechnics, and that's The Listener, the BBC's own highbrow weekly magazine, which ran in parallel with the more functional and middlebrow Radio Times. I didn't know The Listener was founded way back in the Lord Reith era, in 1929, nor that it managed to limp on until 1991. Heavyweight contributors judging by this. Strangely I don't think I ever in my whole life actually read a copy (whereas I betcha Robin Carmody has sat himself down in some Dorset pubic library and gone through the entire run). It was, as I recall, rather frumpy in aura and appearance.

Folklore and Mathematics, Ghost Box's own periodical, initially seemed like it might be something Listener-like, or a journal with photographic plates--something that comes numbered according to Volume, intended to be bound and shelved--but when it arrived it was actually more like a parish newsletter crossed with Radio Times.