The Rare Book Society of India is the first of its kind - it is a virtual space for rare book collectors and history buffs to read, discuss, rediscover and download lost books.
Importantly, it aims to highlight the understanding that there is always more than one truth in history! Sourcing from digital libraries such as The Internet Archive, Google Books and the online collections of various museums around the world, RBSI has curated these rare books and images, and presented them in a context that gives them relevance and shows each piece as a part of a grander whole.
Despite being an ancient literary civilization and having one of the largest literary treasures of hand-written and printed material, India does not have a single Society for rare book collectors. This is an attempt to create a forum where those elusive connoisseurs come together to discuss and share their knowledge on Indian rare books. RBSI showcases rare Indian books, prints and art, that have been digitized, with the purpose of bringing these lost words to life. Through this open virtual platform, members of RBSI can create a digital collection of rare and valuable books by downloading the digitised books that are made available here. What started of as a group for rare book collectors has now transformed into a forum for history buffs, scholars and of course the silent curious. Discussions and comments range from sanguine to educative to irreverent, all providing for an interesting cerebral buzz, every day of the week.
Many of these books might be considered to be history, opinion or plain propaganda - but the aim is to show that there is no wasteful source in the study of history, and there is only an added perspective. More importantly, by reading more than one version of a historical event at this site we begin to understand that there is more than one truth in history, and that in order to learn history, one must also first learn to unlearn.
Founder - RBSI