A Curse on Powell's City of Books
by Barry Graham
I lived in Portland, Oregon, for my last five years in America. One of the most venerated icons there is Powell's City of Books, a new and used bookshop whose main branch occupies an entire city block.
I never understood why it was so beloved as an “independent bookstore.” For years, it fought against its staff attempts to unionise, and it sells used books at rip-off prices. (Disclosure: before I learned about the reality behind the image, I spoke at an event there, and did a book-signing.)
Now it has closed indefinitely because of coronavirus, and its staff have received no severance payment and no continued health insurance.
They're still selling books online. Please boycott them as you would Amazon.