Book History (Fall 2010)

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The purpose of this reading course is to study the history of the book across histories, media, and institutions. This course attempts to trace the beginnings of the book from papyri and manuscripts to the rise of digital publishing, to investigate the formation of reading culture(s), to understand the politics/ontology of publication and authorship, and to analyze the institutions involved. The course begins with classical western antiquity (through the analysis of Greek and Roman reading traditions) and concludes (but not conclusively) with an interrogation into the futurity of the book in whatever form it may take. This reading course also intends to look at various critical theories and philosophies that may inform our analysis of reading. I see this course as helping to inform my understanding of the meaning of the book (in its broadest intellectual historical sense) and its making/unmaking across a period of time.

Introduction (Part 1): the making of the book

N. Katherine Hayles; September 1, 1pm


McKenzie, Donald F. Bibliography and the Sociology of the Text. London: The British Library, 1986.
Darnton, Robert. "What is the history of books"? in The Kiss of Lamourette.
Johns, Adrian. "Introduction: The Book of Nature and the Nature of the Book."The Nature of the Book.Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1998.

Supplementary reading:

Barker, Nicholas and Thomas Adams. "A New Model for the Study of the Book." A Potencie of Life.
Philip Gaskell, New Introduction to Bibliography
Jonathan Rose, "The history of books: revised and enlarged." basically a review essay of recent work. in The Darnton Debate: books and revolution in the 18th ct, ed Haydn T Mason.
The Book History Reader. Ed. by David Finkelstein and Alistair McCleery. New York & London: Routledge, 2002.
Davidson, Peter (ed). The Book Encompassed: Studies in Twentieth Century Bibliography. New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press, 1998.

Introduction (Part 2): how are texts/books studied?

Meeting: Rob Mitchell, 9/13, 10:30am


Chartier, Roger. The Order of Books: Readers, Authors, and Libraries in Europe Between the 14th and 18th Centuries. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992.
Ong, Walter. "Orality and Literacy."

Supplementary reading:

Febvre and Martin. The coming of the book.
McKenzie, "Printers of the Mind."

Ancient libraries and reading

Meeting with William Johnson 9/8 3 pm at his office in the Classics Dept.


Johnson, William A. "The Ancient Book."Oxford Handbook of Papyrology. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2004.
Casson, Lionel. Libraries in the ancient world. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2001.

Supplementary reading:

Roberts and Skeats, Birth of the Codex.
Petroski, Henry. The Book on the Bookshelf. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1999
Grafton, Anthony and Megan Williams. The Transformation of the Book: Origen, Eusebius and the Library at Caesarea. (2006)

Literacy, bibliophilia and the rise of a reading culture

William Johnson, 9/22, 3pm, his office at Classics


Olson, David. The World on Paper: The Conceptual and Cognitive Implications of Writing and Reading. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996.
Ancient Literacies: the Culture of Reading in Greece and Rome. Eds. William A. Johnson and Holt N. Parker. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009. (Chaps 2,3 and 14)
Johnson, William. "Libraries and Reading Culture."

Supplementary Readings

Johnson, William A. Readers and Reading Culture in the High Empire: A Study of Elite Reading Communities. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010.
A History of Reading in the West. Eds. Guglielmo Calvallo and Roger Chartier. Trans. Lydia G. Cochrane. Cambridge: Polity Press, 1999.
Rouse, Mary and Richard. "The Vocabulary of Wax Tablets."
Manguel, Alberto. A History of Reading. New York: Penguin, 1996.

Evolving book technologies: from manuscripts to e-books

Meeting: Kate Hayles, Gray 228, West Campus, 1:00pm, Sept 29


Terry Harpold, Ex-foliations: reading machines and the upgrade path. -- chp 3, 4
McGann, Jerome. Radiant Textuality: Literature after the World Wide Web. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004.

Supplementary Readings

Piper, Andrew. "Introduction." Dreaming in Books: The Making of the Bibliographic Imagination in the Romantic Age. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2009.
Chartier, Roger. Forms and Meanings: Texts, Performances, and Audiences from Codex to Computer. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1995.

At the margins: readers' marks and early modern graffiti

Meeting: Maureen Quilligan, 2pm, Oct. 6


Sherman, William. Used Books: Marking Readers in Renaissance England. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007.
Jackson, H.J. Marginalia: Readers Writing in Books. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2002
Fleming, Juliet. Graffiti and the Writing Arts of Early Modern England.

The politics and culture of publishing

Meeting: Thurs. 10/14 5:30pm


Darnton, Robert. "The Great Cat Massacre." In The Great Cat Massacre and Other Episodes in French Cultural History.
Bourdieu, Pierre. "The Culture of Production."

Supplementary reading:

Davidson, Cathy N. Revolution and the Word, Part 1.
Tennenhouse, Leonard. "The Americanization of Clarissa." Yale Journal of Criticism 11.1 (Spring 1998).
Hall, David. Ways of Writing: The Practice and Politics of Text-making in Seventeenth-century New England.
Hillhouse, James T. The Grub-Street Journal. Durham: Duke University Press, 1928.
Green, James N. and Peter Stallybrass. Benjamin Franklin: Writer and Printer. New Castle: Oak Knoll Press, 2006.
Steinberg, S. H. 500 Years of Printing.
Cave, Roderick. The Private Press. 2nd Ed. New York & London: R.R. Bowker Company, 1983.

Books as cultural agents I: debating technological determinism

Meeting: TBA (Kate Hayles)


Eisenstein, Elizabeth L. The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983.
Johns, Adrian. The Nature of the Book.
Grafton, Anthony. "The Importance of Being Printed."
Needham, Paul. Review of Eisenstein.

Supplementary reading:

McKitterick, David. Print, Manuscript, and the Search for Order.
Constance R. Miller. Technical and cultural prerequisites for the invention of printing in China and the West. San Francisco: Chinese Materials Center, 1983.
Atiyeh, George N. The book in the Islamic world: the written word and communication in the middle East. (1995)

Books as cultural agents II: piracy

Meeting: Weds. 10/27, 1pm, Rob Mitchell


Johns, Adrian. Piracy.
"The Piratical Enlightenment." This is Enlightenment. Ed. C. Siskin and W. Warner. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010. 301-20.

Critical reading and gender in the early modern period

Meeting: Maureen Quilligan, Nov. 10, 2pm


Ferguson, Margaret W. Dido’s Daughters: Literacy, Gender, and Empire in Early Modern England and France. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 2003.
Shakespeare Studies 28 (2000); look in particular at Peter Stallybrass, "Material Culture: An Introduction"; Maureen Quilligan, "Elizabeth's Embroidery"; Margaret de Grazia, "Words as Things"; Jonathan Goldberg, "Shakespeare writing matter again: objects and their detachments"; Rayna Kalas, "The language of framining".
Stallybrass, Peter, Chartier, Roger, Mowery, J. Franklin and Heather Wolfe. "Hamlet's Tables and the Technologies of Writing in Renaissance England." Shakespeare Quarterly 55.4 (2004): 379-419.
Stallybrass, Peter. "Books and Scrolls: Navigating the Bible."

Supplementary reading:

Genette, Gerard. Paratexts: Thresholds of Interpretation. Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 1997.
Jardine, Lisa. Reading Shakespeare Historically. London and New York: Routledge, 1996.
Natalie Zemon Davis, "Beyond the Market: Books as Gifts in Sixteenth-Century France."
Chartier, Roger. Inscrire et effacer : Culture écrite et littérature (XIe-XVIIIe siècle).' Paris : Gallimard/Le Seuil, 2005 (or Inscription and Erasure: Literature and Written Culture from the Eleventh to the Eighteenth Century. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007).

Intellectual Freedom, Censorship and Copyright

Meeting: Fri., 11/19, 1pm, Rob Mitchell


Loewenstein, Joseph. The Author’s Due: Printing and the Prehistory of Copyright. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002.
Rose, Mark. Authors and Owners: The Invention of Copyright.

History of the Book and the Sciences

Meeting: Fri. 12/3, 1pm, Rob Mitchell


Bender, John and Michael Marrinan. The Culture of the Diagram. Stanford University Press, 2010.
Frasca-Spada and Jardine eds., Books and the Sciences in History (2001)
Sher, Richard B. "William Buchan's Domestic Medicine: Laying Book History Open." The Human Face of the Book-Trade: Print Culture and its Creators.Winchester: St Paul's Bibliographies and New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press, 1999.
Sanders, Jonathan. "Medical Secrets and the Book Trade: Ownership of the Copy to the College of Physicians' Pharmacopoeia." The Human Face of the Book-Trade: Print Culture and its Creators.Winchester: St Paul's Bibliographies and New Castle, DE: Oak Knoll Press, 1999.
Tyacke, Sarah. "Describing Maps." The Book Encompassed: Studies in Twentieth Century Bibliography.New Castle: Oak Knoll Press, 1998.

Supplementary reading:

Thornton and Tully's scientific books, libraries and collectors: a study of bibliography and the book trade in relation to the history of science. Ed. Andrew Hunter. Ashgate, 2000.
Withrow, Magda. "Bibliographical Developments in the history of science." The Book Encompassed: Studies in Twentieth Century Bibliography.New Castle: Oak Knoll Press, 1998.