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Can you spot the difference in these two pictures?
November 20, 2003 10:19 AM   Subscribe

In the United States, the cover of Paul Krugman's new book is a little bit different than the cover in England. (from Atrios)
posted by limitedpie (24 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
That is pretty humorous.
posted by Quartermass at 10:22 AM on November 20, 2003


I like the Brit cover better. And what's up with changing the bi line from "From boom to bust in 3 scandalous years" to "loosing our way in the new century" or whatever.
posted by trbrts at 10:26 AM on November 20, 2003


Give us the UK cover! Chickenshits.
posted by damnitkage at 10:31 AM on November 20, 2003


What are you complaning about? This way more people of a conservative bent will pick up the book and read it instead of dismissing it as hateful liberal trash.
posted by angry modem at 10:34 AM on November 20, 2003


oooh! ooh! i spotted it! the england cover has two "L"s in "unraveling", and the american cover has just one!
posted by bhayes82 at 10:37 AM on November 20, 2003


I agree with angry modem - the British copy front cover seems like a bad parody to me, and one certain to drive away the uncertain at that. Not that I don't like it's overall jist - but I actually think it's crudely done.

I'm sure that many of the 1/3 of the British population who think GW is just plain dumb will buy the book. Others, unfortunately, will not.
posted by troutfishing at 11:05 AM on November 20, 2003


Does anyone else find it sadly ironic that our founding fathers fled England so they could have, among other things, freedom of the press?
posted by ariana at 11:07 AM on November 20, 2003


Smart decision on behalf of the publisher-- that stuff may sell in the UK, where Krugman and his NYTimes affiliation doesn't mean all that much, but readersin the states will not take the book 'seriously' with that kind of cover. It's more suited to Michael Moore, Al Franken, etc.

And Araina, this is the definition of freedom of the press-- the freedom to use the cover which is best for all involved.
posted by cell divide at 11:18 AM on November 20, 2003


Whereas I think the Brit cover is funnier, in my own kafkaesque sense of humor, I agree with angrymodem and troutfishing that the cover wouldn't have sold well at all in the U.S.

The tagline however, I'm not sure what marketing decision drove that...I like the British version better.
posted by dejah420 at 11:41 AM on November 20, 2003


Does anyone else find it sadly ironic that our founding fathers fled England so they could have, among other things, freedom of the press?

It seems to me that this has less to do with freedom of the press than it does with what the market may bear.

Personally, as a consumer, I would read this cover as a dig on Krugman's credibility, and, by association, the credibility of the NYTimes. Right or wrong, the culture here in the States is one where grotesque caricature tends to malign one's credibility.
posted by jazzkat11 at 11:45 AM on November 20, 2003


"from boom to bust in 3 scandalous years"? That subtitle sounds very suited to an ADHD-hobbled crowd...
posted by clevershark at 11:58 AM on November 20, 2003


Hm. I saw the U.S. cover and didn't think "savvy marketing," I thought, "self-censorship." Though the two aren't mutually exclusive, I think that the publisher could have come up with another graphic for the U.S. cover that better reflected the volume's content. But they didn't.
posted by ariana at 12:05 PM on November 20, 2003


I'm with jazzkat--applying something like the UK cover in the USA would imply less gravitas within. At least to my perhaps-humo(u)rless American eyes.

That said, nothing like calling a spade a spade, huh?
posted by adamrice at 12:34 PM on November 20, 2003


Freedom of the press has nothing to do with picking a cover that you think will sell. Frankly, I wonder if Krugman even OKd that cover.

In the UK the "anti-bush" zealots probably outnumber the sort of measured "mainstream" liberals that are in the US. After all, why would a brit even care that much about the US economy?

In America, on the other hand the book is targeted towards "serious" people interested in the economics, since a lot more is at stake for them.

I think the American cover is closer to the "real" book, while the UK cover is simply trying to shock and play on people's hatred of bush.
posted by delmoi at 12:35 PM on November 20, 2003


Grotesque caricature is a part of the English political tradition (and the New Zealand and Australian ones), as a peek in the editorial pages of any UK newspaper would show. You guys don't seem to go for it.

I wouldn't read anything more into it than that.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 12:43 PM on November 20, 2003


I have read this book and found it throughly depressing.
posted by H. Roark at 12:43 PM on November 20, 2003


Grotesque caricature is a part of the English political tradition

Indeed
posted by matteo at 1:14 PM on November 20, 2003


Come come, matteo. You can be far more up to date than that.
posted by salmacis at 1:59 PM on November 20, 2003


Gee, with the title "The Great Unraveling", I was expecting something a little more like this.
Google Images almost failed me on this one...
posted by wendell at 3:26 PM on November 20, 2003


wendell - Krugman's book title brings to my mind a bird with a GW Bush face and a string in it's mouth : the string is a woolen thread attached to a giant, threadbare sweater which surrounds a whole - and otherwise naked - middle class nuclear family (mother, father, and two kids).

This GW bush-bird (probably a crow) is flying off and so unravelling the big sweater which keeps the middle class family warm. The GW Bush-bird has a slightly crazed, bright eyed and greedy expression on it's face - exactly what one would expect from a crow.
posted by troutfishing at 3:57 PM on November 20, 2003


This GW bush-bird (probably a crow)

I think you're being a bit unfair to crows there, troutfishing.
posted by DakotaPaul at 4:15 PM on November 20, 2003


I was never good at these games.
posted by Fofer at 5:27 PM on November 20, 2003


DakotaPaul - Maybe, but crows are very industrious birds.....

Yes, I do think GW Bush is very much like a crow: "The crows are going to influence our culture and our world in beneficial ways we can't even imagine today. Much of what they envision I am not yet at liberty to disclose, but I can tell you that it is magnificent. They are going to be birds like we've never seen. In their dark, jewel-like eyes burns an ambition to be more and better and to fly around all over the place constantly. They're smart, they're driven, and they're comin' at us. The crows: let's get ready to welcome tomorrow's only bird. "
posted by troutfishing at 7:20 PM on November 20, 2003


I absolutely HATE anything that attempts to justify itself by pitched at the converted. What is the point? Anti-bushites will more likely read the book for comfort in the UK. In the US, it may get broader readership due to its more moderate cover. However, it may get more press because of the cover, blah blah...hey, what a crock o'shit.
posted by boneybaloney at 4:40 AM on November 21, 2003


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