Tag Archives: Book History Colloquium

Mapping the Bookstore: Retail Cartographies in Antebellum Manhattan

 

Kristen Highland, Ph.D. Candidate, Department of English, New York University

March 25, 2014 (Tuesday)

Butler Library, Room, 523, at 6:00 PM

The romanticization of the independent bookstore—haven of booklovers, erudite employees, and serendipitous discovery—obscures the historical reality of selling books—rapid turnover, failure, and looming bottom lines. But bookstores are also more than the sum of their books. This talk examines bookstores in New York City from 1820 to 1860, mapping their locations and movements to trace the retail landscape of a growing bookselling center, and presenting select case studies of stores, including Appleton & Co., to explore how the physical spaces and marketing strategies of retail booksellers helped shape the very definition of a bookstore and the contours of literary culture more generally. An understudied component of book history, the retail bookstore presented books as mass market goods in the nineteenth century and participated in the lively and varied cultural life of antebellum New York City.

Kristen Doyle Highland is a PhD Candidate in the English Department at New York University. Her dissertation project, “At the Bookstore: Literary and Cultural Experience in Antebellum New York City,” examines the physical forms, social life, and cultural significance of the retail bookstore in 19th century Manhattan. Her research has been supported by fellowships and grants from the American Antiquarian Society, the Library Company of Philadelphia, and the Bibliographical Society of America.

The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

“Obscene” – Wednesday, February 19, 7:00 PM

 

A screening of Obscene, a documentary about publisher Barney Rosset

Introduced by the film’s co-director, Daniel O’Connor

Chang Room, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University

 Followed by a reception at the Rare Book and Manuscript Library

 


A Panel on Personalities in Post-war Publishing

with Loren Glass, Boris Kachka, and Jay Gertzman

Post-War Publishers 

December 11, 2013 (Wednesday)

Butler Library, Room, 523, at 6:00 p.m.

Loren Glass is a Professor of English at the University of Iowa and author of Counterculture Colophon: Grove Press, the Evergreen Review, and the Incorporation of the Avant-Garde (Stanford University Press, 2013).  Boris Kachka is a journalist and the author of Hothouse: The Art of Survival and the Survival of Art at America’s Most Celebrated Publishing House, Farrar Straus Giroux (Simon & Schuster, 2013).  Jay Gertzman wrote the first biography of the publisher Samuel Roth, this year’s Samuel Roth, Infamous Modernist (University Press of Florida, 2013).

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The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

The Reader’s Eye: Between Annotation and Illustration

William H. Sherman, Professor of English, University of York

November 14, 2013 (Thursday)

Butler Library, Room, 523, at 5:00 p.m. (please note the earlier time)

Recent scholarship in the lively field of marginalia has treated readers’ marks almost exclusively as a verbal phenomenon – as words, that is, next to other words. But in doing so we have lost sight of sight itself, and the ways in which readers used images as well as words to make their books beautiful, meaningful, and useful.  Between medieval illumination and modern illustration, there are many traces of reading as a visual mode, signs that we have been slow to see and study and for which we are poorly served by both methodology and terminology. This illustrated lecture will consider the range of images produced by readers between 1450 and 1750, and will suggest that reading was closely bound up with seeing – and even drawing – across the Medieval/Renaissance divide.

William Sherman’s recent publications include Used Books: Marking Readers in Renaissance England (University of Pennsylvania, 2007) and a special issue of The Huntington Library Quarterly on Prison Writings in Early Modern England. He has edited Shakespeare’s Tempest for Norton and Jonson’s Alchemist for Cambridge and is now completing the Arden Early Modern Drama edition of Marlowe’s Jew of Malta. He is writing a study of visual marginalia called The Reader’s Eye and editing a collection of essays – with Juliet Fleming and Adam Smyth – on Renaissance Collage.

Co-sponsored with the Department of Latin American and Iberian Cultures, Columbia University

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The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

Book History Colloquium: “The Birth of Italics”

Randall McLeod

Randall McLeod, Emeritus Professor of English, University of Toronto

November 4, 2013 (Monday)

Butler Library, Room, 523, at 6:00 p.m.

The 1501 Venetian Vergil was the first book printed entirely in italics. On the verso of the title page, the printer, Aldo Manuzio, celebrated the type-cutter, Francesco da Bologna. (The two fell out a year later, however, over ownership of the new typeface.) Curiously, production began before all the sorts had been created: all the letters were in place, but not all the ligatures. The trickling on stream of some fifteen of the latter points led to a bizarre schedule of composition and printing. A material reading of the text will resurrect this schedule in surprising detail.

Randall McLeod has published about editing Shakespearean sonnets, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and John Donne. He is the inventor of the McLeod Portable Collator, a stereoscopic device for comparing texts as images, and sometimes publishes as ‘Random Cloud.’

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The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

Book History Colloquium: Girls, Zines, and their Afterlives: On the Significance of Multiple Networks and Itineraries of Dissent

Janice Radway, Walter Dill Scott Professor of Communications, Northwestern University

October 24, 2013 (Thursday)

Barnard Zine Library Tour at 5:00 PM (meeting in Lehman Hall lobby) [See, map @ no. 20]

Talk at 6: 00 PM in Butler Library, Room 523

Dissident and non-conforming girls and young women developed an interest in what are now called “girl zines” through a number of different routes, with a range of different interests, and at different moments over the course of the last twenty years. This social, material and temporal variability raises interesting and important questions about whether “girl zines” should be thought of as a unitary phenomenon and, correlatively, whether the girl zine explosion should be thought of as an event, a social movement, a conversation, a political intervention, or something else. Drawing on oral history interviews with former girl zine producers as well as with zine librarians, archivists, and commentators, this presentation will raise questions about the recent history of feminism and its relationship to other “new social movements” at a time of significant economic, political, and technological change in the 1980s, 90s, and into the 21st century.

Janice Radway is the author of Reading the Romance: Women, Patriarchy and Popular Literature, and A Feeling for Books: The Book- of-the-Month Club, Literary Taste, and Middle Class Desire. In addition, Prof. Radway co-edited American Studies: An Anthology and Print in Motion: The Expansion of Publishing and Reading in the United States, 1880-1945, which is Volume IV of A History of the Book in America. She has served as the editor of American Quarterly, the official journal of the American Studies Association.

Free and open to the public.  There will be snacks and beverages.

 

Co-sponsored with the Barnard Zine Library, Barnard College

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The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

Book History Colloquium: Panel on Handmade Books, Remade Genres

 

 

Rachel Feder, "Marginal Experiments"

Ellen Gruber Garvey, "Repurposed Books"

Karen Sánchez-Eppler, "Beyond the Press of History"

 

October 10, 2013 (Thursday)

 

Butler Library, Room 523 at 6:00 p.m.

 

This panel brings together three scholars who work on 19th-century American and British handmade books. In “Marginal Experiments”, Rachel Fader will explore the connections between nineteenth-century women’s daily writing and the history of experimental poetry. “Beyond the Press of History” focuses on manuscript-books that strive to record their historical moment (by Edward Hitchcock, George Templeton Strong, William Dorsey, and Vincente Pérez Rosales) and shows how attention to manuscript-books can open a more expansive model of national narrative and national belonging.

Rachel Feder is a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of English at Rutgers University. Rachel’s current research focuses on nineteenth-century commonplace books, book history, and experimental poetics.  Ellen Gruber Garvey’s most recent book, Writing with Scissors: American Scrapbooks from the Civil War to the Harlem Renaissance came out from Oxford University Press in 2013.  Prof. Gruber Garvey, a Professor of English at New Jersey City University, is also the author of The Adman in the Parlor: Magazines and the Gendering of Consumer Culture (OUP, 1996), which received a SHARP Prize for Best Book. Karen Sánchez-Eppler is L. Stanton Williams 1941 Professor of American Studies and English at Amherst College.  The author of Touching Liberty: Abolition, Feminism and the Politics of the Body (1993) and Dependent States: The Child’s Part in Nineteenth-Century American Culture (2005), she is currently working on two book projects The Unpublished Republic: Manuscript Cultures of the Mid-Nineteenth Century U.S. and In the Archives of Childhood: Personal and Historical Pasts.

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The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

All sessions take place 6pm in 523 Butler Library, Columbia Morningside Campus, unless otherwise noted.

Book History Colloquium: “How to Read Books Doing Things in Imperial Rome”

Joseph Howley

Assistant Professor of Classics, Columbia University

 

September 26, 2013 (Thursday)

Butler Library, Room 523 at 6:00 p.m.

Between the Alexandrian aesthetics of the poetic book roll and the modern values of the industrially printed codex lies the world of  the Roman book.  This talk examines some uses of the material text in Roman prose authors such as Seneca the Elder, Suetonius, and Aulus Gellius, including its use as a weapon, its subjection to destruction, and its relationship to speech and thought, to explore how Romans imagined the book as a  technology and force in their world.

Joseph Howley works on the intellectual culture of the Roman Empire, processes of mediation in the Roman Imperial world, problems of miscellany and other quasi-literary forms, and the ancient and modern history of the book. He is currently preparing a book on Noctes Atticae of Aulus Gellius, exploring the way Gellius’s neglected work frames, narrates, and prompts processes of critical and self-aware learning in the context of second-century Rome.

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The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

All sessions take place 6pm in 523 Butler Library, Columbia Morningside Campus, unless otherwise noted.

Thursday, April 18th– Book History Colloquium: “Translating the Enlightenment: The Publisher as Cultural Intermediary” with Jeffrey Freedman

Freedman

The last third of the eighteenth century was a period of remarkable creativity in the world of German letters, a period historians associate with such famous authors as Lessing, Kant, and Goethe. At that time, however, German works were practically unknown outside of Germany unless translated into French, the universal language of educated Europeans. This paper will show how the (mainly Swiss) publishers who translated German works adapted their translations for an international public of French-readers that stretched from Dublin to Moscow.

Jeffrey Freedman is Associate Professor of History at Yeshiva University and the author of A Poisoned Chalice (Princeton University Press, 2002) and Books Without Borders in Enlightenment Europe: French Cosmopolitanism and German Literary Markets (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012).

The Book History Colloquium at Columbia University, open to any discipline, aims to provide a broad outlet for the scholarly discussion of book history, print culture, the book arts, and bibliographical research, and (ideally) the promotion of research and publication in these fields. Our presenters include Columbia faculty members and advanced graduate students, and scholars of national prominence from a range of institutions.

Questions? Email Karla Nielsen.

This session takes place in 523 Butler Library, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.

Thursday, March 28th– Book History Colloquium: “Amiable with Big Teeth: Discovering Claude McKay’s Long Lost Novel”

Speakers: Jean-Christophe Cloutier and Brent Edwards

Location: 523 Butler Library, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.

 
In 2009, the complete typescript of Amiable with Big Teeth, a previously unknown novel by Claude McKay written in 1941, was discovered in Columbia University’s Rare Book and Manuscript Library.  In anticipation of the novel’s publication, this talk covers the story of its unexpected discovery, and recounts the years of archival research that led to its successful authentication. In addition, it will contextualize the novel’s composition, and consider its implications for our understanding of McKay and the “aftermath” of the Harlem Renaissance. The bound typescript’s location in the papers of Samuel Roth, the man who notoriously published unauthorized excerpts of Joyce’s Ulysses in the late 1920s, also suggestively links McKay’s fate to that of high modernism.
 

Jean-Christophe Cloutier is a graduate student in the Department of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, where he also works as an archival intern since 2009. His dissertation, “Archival Vagabonds: Twentieth-Century American Fiction and the Archive in Novelistic Practice”, explores the interplay between the archival and aesthetic sensibilities of twentieth-century novelists.
 
Brent Hayes Edwards is a Professor in the Department of English and Comparative Literature and the Center for Jazz Studies at Columbia. He is the author of the prize-winning study The Practice of Diaspora: Literature, Translation, and the Rise of Black Internationalism (Harvard UP, 2003), which was awarded the John Hope Franklin Prize of the American Studies Association and the Gilbert Chinard prize of the Society for French Historical Studies.