U of S | Mailing List Archive | alt-photo-process-l | Re: WAY OT! TEXT BOOKS


Now that we all know the revisions are often trivial, why not buy the previous edition on Amazon for a song? That's what I do. Oh, every now and then I get stung because I have to look up the texts used by a professor during the previous semester to order early enough, but professors tend to stick with the same texts. And in turn, they can sell them for the same song when the semester's over or keep them. And lately the local textbook store has started charging almost new prices for old versions (new one $60, used $51), very easy offer to turn down if only just to spite them.


wcharmon@wt.net wrote:
Yes. It hurts. I have two daughters in college right now, and book costs run between $500 and $700 per semester (or quarter). To add insult to injury, the publishers also now encourage textbook authors to come out with new editions (with mostly minor, trivial changes)every two years or so. So they have effectively knocked the used textbook market on the head. Back in 'the day', I remember selling my textbooks back to the bookstore at the end of each semester and getting a little cash back. When my daughters try to do this, they are often told that a new edition is coming out, and that their books are worthless. A lot of trees are dying to make sure that students are exposed to the avalanche of recent cutting-edge work on the semiotic implications of merchant-class cravat preferences in 16th century Italy that did not make it into the first edition of the textbook.

Quoting BOB KISS <bobkiss@caribsurf.com>:

PLEASE reply to me off list on this one as I am certain that it
will be of little interest to most of the list.
Here in Barbados I have been drafted to teach a first year, first
semester course on Intro to Cinema, a survey course where we see 11 films
(the usual suspects; Kane, Caligari, Potemkin, etc.) and the students write
critiques. The syllabus (aka silly bus) was written and the texts chosen by
the previous instructor, approved by the University academic committee and,
therefore etched in stone. I have no problem with the silly bus and the
texts are rather good. What has me floored is the COST of the texts!!! I
was shocked! O.K., I haven’t bought a text book since the late 80s when I
studied film making at NYU (in my spare time while putting in 60 hours a
week running my photo studio). They seemed a bit steep then ($20 to $30)
but these books are WAY OTT price wise!
Bordwell and Thompson’s FILM ART-An Introduction $70 at Barnes &
Noble and $80 locally (imported)
pamphlet!!!) $35 at B&N and $40 locally.
I guess I am just out of the loop but if someone is taking 5 or 6
courses they are spending $600 to $720 just on books and I am certain that
law, medical and psych students have it worse!
Is this the way of the academic world now?

Please check my website: http://www.bobkiss.com/ <http://www.bobkiss.com/>

"Live as if you are going to die tomorrow. Learn as if you are going to
live forever". Mahatma Gandhi