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International Coalition for British Reparations: People of the World, it's Time to get Paid.

Potter's Success Isn't Helping Other Authors

08.22.2007 - The Week

There are some pretty spectacular authors out there. Homer was all right and I'm particularly partial to Salinger and Dostoevsky; then there was that Liu Xiang guy who wrote the Zhan Guo Ce during the Han Dynasty (ok, you caught me, I just skimmed that one). Hemingway is another personal favorite and you gotta give props to Ibn al-Nadim, Dickens, and of course Salman Rushdie . But I was particularly perturbed to find out that J.K. Rowling, author of the popular Harry Potter series, has sold more copies of her pre-pubescent, wizard-boy books than just about damn near anyone. In fact, she is third on the list behind Jesus Christ and the ever popular Mao Zedung.

Now, some might argue that this Brit's fantasy books have done wonders for the world of reading amongst youngsters and adults alike, but that claim could not be farther from the truth. In a recent Washington Post column reprinted in the July 27th issue of The Week, Ron Charles takes a look at how the Potter series has aided in the demise of substantiative literature's popularity. After finishing the latest Harry Pothead novel, neither kids nor adults seem to foray further into fiction's more fertile grounds. In fact, more than half of both children and adults "won't read a single novel this year. The books that do sell are [poorly written trash]." It seems popular series, like Rowling's, that offer immediate gratification with little intellectual content discourage readers from tackling literature that can be challenging on a myriad of different levels. So Great Britain, once again thank you for doing the world a great disservice. As one of your own sits atop an increasingly large pile of pounds, the rest of the world is gradually embracing philistinism. And no, that's philistinism, not Palestinian; they are a completely different problem of your creating.

If you want yours then visit our website at and sign the petition to get paid! And make sure to pick up a copy of The Evil Empire: 101 Ways That England Ruined The World, in bookstores and online. Visit for a sneak preview, press and enhanced features.

About The International Coalition for British Reparations
The International Coalition for British Reparations (ICBR) is a think tank of British foreign policy headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the city where America's split with Britain began in 1776. Founded on July 4, 2006, we have members all over the world.

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