Stilt dancers. Shakespeare & Co. Paris.

I lived in Paris in 2001. The Shakespeare & Co. Bookstore announced a visit by Lawrence Ferlinghetti the legendary publisher and owner of San Francisco’s City Lights books. I showed up excited to meet Ferlinghetti, but was met with an apology. We were told that because of his age he had confused the dates and he’d been in Paris month earlier.  He must have had an extended period of forgetfulness. He died twenty years later in 2021. To make up for missing the main attraction the bookstore hired stilt dancers to entertain.

Sylvia Beach Whitman, current owner of Shakespeare & Co. Paris

Shakespeare & Co is an English language bookstore. It was opened in Paris in 1951 by an Englishman, George Whitman.

The store is named after the original Shakespeare & Co. opened in 1919 by Sylvia Beach. The original store was home to Hemingway, James Joyce and others.

Whitman named his daughter Sylvia Beach Whitman (above). She is now the owner of the bookstore.