Indexers and Indexes in Fact and Fiction (Studies in Book and Print Culture)
Designer: Brand: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division
The index, taken for granted, perhaps considered boring - or not considered at all - is an essential part of a book. Indexers and Indexing takes a wry look at the history, uses and implications of this little-considered element of the book, and offers an anthology of amusing index extracts. Compiled by a professional indexer, it examines the history and development of the index, and highlights the debate and comment that the index has invited over the years. The author examines indexes from earlier centuries: some endearingly quaint; some deliberately humorous; some plain awful; and some which are astonishing in the vehemence of the views they present. Bell also examines the depiction of indexers in fiction - and the picture she finds is not encouraging to the professional indexer - variously portrayed as diffident, domestic drudges or incompetent and fallen pedants. A wonderful book for editors, indexers and bibliophiles.