This post was first published in The Arty Semite blog at the Forward.
Jews in the U.K. have been wondering what’s up with Waterstone’s, the country’s largest bookstore chain. While some of the company’s actions have aroused suspicions of anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, other Jewish customers are simply questioning Waterstone’s business sense.
In May 2011, Russian billionaire Alexander Mamut acquired Waterstone’s from HMV for £53 million.
Last month, the Jewish community was shocked to see Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” promoted by Waterstone’s as a “perfect” Christmas present. In a statement Waterstone’s Head of Communications Fiona Allen made to The Arty Semite, she admitted that this was a mistake. She emphasized that it was limited to one branch only, that the company had issued an apology, and that “the bookseller [was] given words of advice on his error of judgment.”
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© 2012 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.