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MAY 20, 2021

Books of the Dead:

The Real and Fictionalized Horrors of Anthropodermic Bibliopegy


Librarian Megan Rosenbloom takes us through the curious phenomenon of anthropodermic bibliopegy, examining the trope of books bound in human skin as featured in horror film/literature, followed by a more in-depth discussion of the real cases of human skin books throughout history and the scientific tests that can now separate the legends from the real deal.

Stick around after the lecture + Q&A to join us for a screening of Sam Raimi’s ​Evil Dead II (1987) (via a streaming service near you):




We welcome donations to support our programming and the guest lecturer! You can contribute at the Universe ticket site linked above, or via https://ko-fi.com/blackmuseumto.


Megan Curran Rosenbloom is Collection Strategies Librarian at UCLA Library in Los Angeles. Megan served as a medical librarian for many years, where she developed a keen interest in the history of medicine and rare books. She is President of the Southern California Society for the History of Medicine and actively involved in other professional organizations (for details, consult CV). Megan is the co-founder and director of Death Salon, the event arm of The Order of the Good Death, and a proponent of the Death Positive movement. She leads a research team called The Anthropodermic Book Project that aims to find the historic and scientific truths behind the world’s alleged books bound in human skin, or anthropodermic bibliopegy, and her debut book about this practice, titled Dark Archives: A Librarian’s Investigation into the Science and History of Books Bound in Human Skin, published October 20, 2020 with Farrar, Straus & Giroux.  In a former life she was a journalist in Philadelphia and continues to write for both academic and non-academic publications. Visit her website at meganrosenbloom.com.