Shakespeare & Company: A Landmark of American Literary Culture in Paris

“I may disappear leaving behind me no worldly possessions – just a few old socks and love letters, and my windows overlooking Notre-Dame for all of you to enjoy, and my little rag and bone shop.” These words were said by George Whitman, and the “little rag and bone shop” he describes is Shakespeare & Company: a ubiquitous landmark in literary culture, a regular home for aspiring and established writers, and a totem of 20th century history peppered with intriguing tales involving war, eccentric artists, and bohemian utopia. Less a bookstore and more a bastion of cultural community, Shakespeare & Company has been a far-reaching, resounding name for locals and travelers to Paris alike for nearly a hundred years.

Currently located on Rue de la Bûcherie, the windows didn’t always [...]

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