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THE BIBLIO FILE is a leading podcast that examines "the book" and book culture. Hosted by NIGEL BEALE it features wide ranging conversations with writers, poets, book publishers, booksellers, book editors, book collectors, book makers, book scholars, book critics, book designers, book publicists, literary agents and other best practitioners who busy themselves with the world of books.

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Aug 7, 2022

Why listen to James Marsh? Because he knows about love and encyclopedias. 
He grew up in The Junction district of Toronto surviving a difficult childhood, and began his career in publishing at Holt Rinehart and Winston where he was editor of a Centennial history of Canada entitled Unity and Diversity. He later became executive editor of McClelland and Stewart's Carleton Library Series, after which he was hired by Mel Hurtig as editor-in-chief of The Canadian Encyclopedia - the biggest printing/publishing endeavour in Canadian history. 
We talk about his memoir Know it All: Finding the Impossible Country and about what he found; about encyclopedias striving for ideals; about historian Ramsey Cook and limited identities; selection by community; post-Centennial enthusiasm for Canada; economic nationalism; selling 250,000 sets of The Canadian Encyclopedia and then putting it on-line and making it "engaging;" the importance of conversation to democracy; Alberta premier Peter Lougheed; the woman with the two colour eyes; and the gift of friendship.