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Only in Hellenistic Greece, in Rome, and in China, where there were essentially nontheocratic societies, does there seem to have been any publishing in the modern sense—Arabs but not, it seems, printing.
The reason may well lie in Arab insistence on hand copying of the Qurʾān (Arabic printing of the Qurʾān does not appear to have been officially sanctioned until 1825).
The market for books was still small, but literacy had spread beyond the clergy and had reached the emerging middle classes.
The church, the state, universities, reformers, and radicals were all quick to use the press.
Printing in Europe is inseparable from the Reformation.For statistical purposes, however, the United Nations Educational, Social and Cultural Organization defines a book as “a non-periodical printed publication of at least 49 pages excluding covers.” Periodical publications may be further divided into two main classes, magazines.Though the boundary between them is not sharp—there are magazines devoted to news, and many newspapers have magazine features—their differences of format, tempo, and function are sufficiently marked: the newspaper (daily or weekly) usually has large, loose pages, a high degree of immediacy, and miscellaneous contents; whereas the magazine (weekly, monthly, or quarterly) has smaller pages, is usually fastened together and sometimes bound, and is less urgent in tone and more specialized in content.History of publishing, an account of the selection, preparation, and marketing of printed matter from its origins in ancient times to the present.The activity has grown from small beginnings into a vast and complex industry responsible for the dissemination of all manner of cultural material; its impact upon civilization is impossible to calculate.
It grew from the climate and needs of the first, and it fought in the battles of the second.