Return of the Native

Scot Kamins kamins at
Fri Mar 10 17:49:40 EST 2006

On Mar 10, 2006, at 3:31 AM, Mark Braley wrote:

> A nice 1930's copy of Return of the Native with the really cool  
> graphic DJ (I think it is usually referred to as art deco, but it  
> reminds me more of constructivism) just sold on e-bay for $474.00....

>   On the other hand, hasn't e-bay turned the entire world into an  
> auction?

I believe that eBay doesn't ordinarily represent market prices except  
in the aggregate. I don't trust it as a market guide EXCEPT when the  
biding is on an extremely scarce -- even rare -- item, AND when the  
bidders are knowledgeable.

So I don't think that a general revision to the Guide's prices are in  
order based on eBay stats (although I do think that a revision would  
be in order for other reasons.

But in the case of this book, the pricing may be considered  
reasonable (whatever that means) because the title in this DJ IS  
INDEED scarce and most of the bidders -- including the top bidders  
and the winner -- are people whom I consider to be quite knowledgeable.

The sale of one copy ordinarily doesn't define a market, But very  
scarce items don't have anything to do with aggregate numbers. They  
are worlds in themselves.

I'd rather have that title in that DJ in my collection more than I'd  
want a Gatsby.

Scot Kamins
"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price  
of chains and slavery?" -- Patrick Henry

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