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Learning English - Words in the News
16 May, 2011 - Published 16:58 GMT
Argentina builds a tower of books
The Tower of Babel monument
Artist Marta Minujin created the tower, which is 25 metres high

A new monument celebrating books has been launched in Buenos Aires. The Tower of Babel was created by artist Marta Minujin, who is well-known for creating works made from plastic. The tower includes books in more than 50 languages. Daniel Schweimler reports.

Listen to the story

This is simply an audio and visual celebration of the book - any books, all books, in whichever language you like. Works by Jane Austen, Dickens, Henry Blake, Ernest Hemingway, Cervantes, Vargas Llosa, Tolstoy and the Argentina's own favourites, Borges and Sabato, line the walls of this tower, each wrapped in plastic for its own protection.

The United Nations has designated the city as the 2011 World Book capital.

This book tower is 25 metres high and lined with 30,000 donations from more than 50 embassies. It'll be dismantled at the end of the month and the books will form the beginning of a multi-lingual library.

The Buenos Aires Book Fair, one of the biggest in the world, has just ended, recording more visitors than ever before. The city boasts hundreds of bookshops and some cafes even supply works by Argentina's most renowned literary icon, Jorge Luis Borges, to read over coffee. Buenos Aires is a city that loves its books and now it has a tower to prove it.

Daniel Schweimler, BBC News, Buenos Aires

Listen to the words

are displayed in rows across

has designated
has described or named

book tower
here, tall structure which is partly built from books

buildings where groups of people who represent their countries and governments in foreign countries work (an ambassador is the head of an embassy)

taken apart

a multi-lingual library
collection of books, printed in various different languages

taking note of (information)

contains or possesses

here, published books

over coffee
while drinking coffee

To take away
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