The online Early Modern Futures exhibition accompanied the Early Modern Futures Conference held in April 2015 as well as a physical exhibition in the Rare Book & Manuscript Library (RBML). Developed by graduate students working with Karla Nielsen RBML’s Curator of Literature, the online exhibition explores how early modern literature conceived of future events, how and whether those conceptions shaped people’s lives, and what this literature offers us in both its historical perspectives and its forward-thinking projections. From the well known writers Jonson, Marlowe, and Milton to central literary figures such as Katherine Phillips and works on land surveying, tobacco farming, and the end times of Revelations, this online exhibition offers a fascinating perspective on the ways that early modern literature influenced and was influenced by the histories and futures it encompassed.
LDPD provided the Omeka platform, metadata and imaging assistance, and training for its curators. The curators of this exhibition were graduate students in Columbia’s Department of English and Comparative Literature. LDPD has worked with RBML curators to enable graduate students to effectively contribute to the creation and curation of online exhibitions. Graduate students often work closely with RBML on their dissertation research, so providing this support allows LDPD to support the teaching and learning missions of the libraries.