Andrew Fink is the first place winner in the 2010 National Collegiate Book Collecting Contest!
On October 15, Fink will be awarded a prize of $2,500 at a ceremony and dinner at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.. Fink was selected for his submission An Interdisciplinary Survey of 20th Century Propaganda. A prize of $1,000 will go to Puget Sound’s Collins Memorial Library to assist in the promotion of future book collecting contests.
His collection began when he read Orwell’s Animal Farm. “Around that time, I also became interested in religious propaganda, particularly religious tracts that strange old men would hand out on the sidewalk at the edge of the school grounds,” Fink relates. “I had no real interest in believing what they said; mostly I wanted to critique their arguments.”
The philosophy major began to build his collection from many different places.
“Used book stores were a favorite hangout of mine, because usually buried somewhere between two mundane tomes there was a strange, little pamphlet hawking some strange ideology,” he wrote. Fink’s collection includes fiction books, pamphlets, books on philosophy and art, and newspaper articles, “even ripping posters off walls and picking up books I happened across in the restroom.”
Second Prize: Ryan Julian, University of Chicago, for “The History of Mathematics”
Third Prize: Philipp S. Penka, Harvard University, for “‘Temporary Spiritual Sustenance’: The Print Culture of Russian Displaced Persons in Postwar Germany (1945-1951)”
Essay Prize: Bailey N. Pike, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, for “The Mythology of Mozart”
The contest organizers are the Antiquarian Booksellers’ Association of America, the Fellowship of American Bibliophilic Societies, the Center for the Book, the Rare Books and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress, and support from the Jay I. Kislak Foundation.