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Stranded encyclopedias

januar 8, 2018

Call for papers:

Stranded encyclopedias:
Encyclopedic dreams and practices, c. 1600–2000

Event:                13–14 September 2018
Category:           Symposium
Location:           Stockholm, Sweden
Organizers:       Linn Holmberg (Stockholm University) & Maria Simonsen (Aalborg University)
Language:         English
Abstract due:   1 March 2018

This call for papers goes out to scholars who study unfinished and unpublished encyclopedias, compiled c. 1600–2000.

The history of modern encyclopedias has long been dominated by serial narratives of successful, influential publications. However, if we want to refine our understanding of modern encyclopedism as practice – its varieties, development, motivations, and geographical expansion – best-selling works may not necessarily be the most useful sources. As Richard Yeo has remarked, ‘encyclopedic dreams have almost always outrun achievements’ and throughout history, many ‘large projects were left unfinished, stranded at some volume before the end of the alphabet’.[1] Now, for the first time, this international and interdisciplinary symposium places this category of works and their production histories at the center.

What kind of ‘encyclopedias’?

The symposium will focus on alphabetically-organized knowledge compendia, that is, factual dictionaries or real-lexica, with general as well as specialized scope of content. This means that we consciously exclude thematic reference-works (which may also possess encyclopedic-like properties), such as common-place books, text-books, manuals, etc. This is a strategic choice to enable more focused discussions and comparisons over time and place. Geographically, we are open to cases from the whole world.  

Why stranded’ encyclopedias?

According to the Cambridge English Dictionary, stranded means ‘unable to leave somewhere because of a problem, such as not having any transport or money’. In this respect, stranded is a word that provokes an inquisitiveness about circumstances and motives. What happened here, and why? What drove the people involved? What was the purpose and function of their work?

Motives and practices

By comparing stranded encyclopedias during a four-hundred-year period – starting with the first appearances of vernacular factual dictionaries in seventeenth-century continental Europe, and ending with the transition of large-scale encyclopedias to digital media in the late twentieth century – we hope to explore a wider spectrum of reasons for why people have devoted themselves to alphabetical encyclopedism as practice. One should not assume, however, that all dictionary manuscripts were ‘stranded’ in the sense of ‘failing to be finished or published’ – at least not in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Some manuscripts seem to have been compiled for personal use primarily, as part of a learning strategy. It is thus possible that such texts were not only never meant to be published, but never meant to be finished.

Geographical expansion and circulation

Moreover, by examining unrealized projects, we may get other insights into the transnational circulation or geographical expansion of alphabetical encyclopedic practice, outside prominent publishing centers on the European continent. Histories of encyclopedias that are based on a chronology of published works tend to convey the idea that encyclopedic practice or innovation ‘reached’ a region, nation, or colony at the moment when its first publications appeared. Reasonably, since practice precedes publication (possibly without resulting in publication for a long time), such assumptions are misleading. Here, studies of unfinished and unpublished encyclopedic manuscripts may rewrite such histories, while simultaneously raising questions about how we define encyclopedism as a historical practice – what it was, where, and when.

Paper proposals

We encourage scholars of all disciplines, nationalities, and at all career stages to submit paper proposals regarding unfinished/unpublished encyclopedic projects of both general and specialized character. Participants are especially encouraged to reflect upon methodological possibilities and challenges associated with their sources. Abstracts should not exceed 250 words and be sent to linn.holmberg@idehist.su.se and simonsen@cgs.aau.dk. The deadline for submission is 1 March 2018.

It is our ambition to later edit and publish the symposium papers in an anthology.

A note on economy

Participation in the symposium is free of charge and includes reception dinner, lunch, and refreshments. We may be able to contribute financially to travel and accommodation of a certain number of students/researchers with limited financial means. Please indicate in your proposal if (and why) you would benefit from such support.

Contact:

Linn Holmberg, PhD

Researcher in History of Science and Ideas

Department of Culture and Aesthetics, Stockholm University, Sweden

http://www.su.se/english/profiles/lihol-1.286506

linn.holmberg@idehist.su.se

 

Maria Simonsen, PhD

Assistant professor in History

Department of Culture and Global Studies, Aalborg University, Denmark

http://personprofil.aau.dk/113201?lang=en

simonsen@cgs.aau.dk

 

[1] Richard Yeo, Encyclopedic Visions: Scientific Dictionaries and Enlightenment Culture (2011), p. 4.

Reklamer

Simonsens afhandling

august 8, 2017

fås nu på Museum Tusculanums Forlag. Klik her for at læse mere og bestille
 

Bogen og værket

maj 9, 2017

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Så er Klaus Nielsens (min) bog kommet! Udgivelsesdato: 19. maj 2017. Den handler om bøger og litteratur. Nærmere bestemt handler den om begrebet det litterære værk, som inden for litteraturvidenskaben er en kompleks størrelse. Det ikke nyt for boghistorikerne. Formålet med bogen er at udfordre det litteraturvidenskabelige felt på dets manglende refleksion over dette vigtige begreb og nuancere definitionen af litteraturanalysens genstand.

Klik ind på Museum Tusculanums Forlag for at læse mere og bestille et eksemplar.

Disputation i Lund

november 13, 2016

Hjärtliga lyckönskningar till Maria Simonsen, doktorand på avdelningen för bokhistoria vid Lunds universitet, som spikade sin doktorsavhandling Den skandinaviske encyklopædi : Udgivelse og udformning af Nordisk familjebok & Salmonsens Konversationsleksikon fredagen den 11:e november. Den 9:e december, klockan 10.15 äger disputationen rum i sal C121 på LUX, Helgonavägen 3 i Lund. Alla intresserade hälsas välkomna!

simonsen_

NFFB #10

juli 4, 2016

Seminar fredag den 7. oktober 2016

Litteraturen og bogmarkedet

nordiskt-forum-7-oktober-2016

Fredag den 7. oktober 2016 holder Nordisk Forum for Boghistorie sit 10. seminar på LUX, Lunds universitet. Jubilæet markeres med en eftermiddag i litteraturens og bogmarkedets tegn. Overskriften rammer på passende vis den bredde, som forummets seminarer hidtil har udvist, og vi skal endnu en gang lytte til fire unge forskere fortælle om deres arbejde. Alle interesserede er varmt velkomne.

Tid: 13.30-17.00 den 7. oktober 2016
Sted: Avdelningen för bokhistoria, Lunds universitet, LUX, Lokale C126

Program

· Maria Purtoft (ph.d.-stipendiat, Tromsø): Henrik Ibsens norske læsere
· Henning Hansen (ph.d.-stipendiat, Tromsø): Landsbygdsläsning
· Maria Damkjær (post.doc., København): Tidsskriftslitteratur og skjult reklame i 1800-tallets Storbritannien
· Malin Nauwerck (doktorand, Uppsala): Canongates Myth-Series

Working papers

juli 4, 2016

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I styringsgruppen for Nordisk Forum for Boghistorie har vi besluttet at oprette en sektion på hjemmesiden for publicering af medlemmers working papers.

Hensigten er, at hjemmesiden dermed kan fungere som publikationskanal for igangværende forskning, som endnu ikke har fundet endelig form. Det kan for eksempel være manuskripter til foredrag, foreløbige bogkapitler og lignende.

Materialet vil gennemgå en minimal redaktionsproces, men det primære faglige ansvar ligger hos forfatterne selv.

En redaktionskomite vil blive oprettet til formålet. Foreløbigt vil den bestå af forummets styringsgruppe, men hensigten er at udvide den. Hvert bidrag vil blive læst af minimum to redaktører.

I den forbindelse vil vi gerne opfordre forummets medlemmer at sende materiale ind med henblik på publicering på hjemmesiden. Der er ingen sidetalsbegrænsning, og materialet kan være skrevet på svensk, norsk, dansk eller engelsk. Bidrag sendes til Klaus Nielsen på teoklausn@cas.au.dk
 

I utkanten av svensk stad

april 6, 2016

 Material och människor, arkiv och böcker

Kulturseminarium i regi av forskningsnoden för studier i analog kultur.
Institutionen för kulturvetenskaper, Lunds universitet, LUX, sal C426.

Torsdagen den 14 april, kl. 13.15–15.00

Bokverket Svensk stad, som kom ut i tre delar 1950-1953, är en klassiker i svensk urbanhistoria. I böckerna beskrivs den svenska urbaniseringen och industrialiseringen från 1800-talets mitt till 1900-talets början med ett antal städer och orter som exempel, bland annat Örebro, Sundsvall och Helsingborg. Huvudredaktör var Gregor Paulsson, men bakom bokverket stod en grupp skribenter från olika vetenskapliga discipliner. Etnologen Börje Hanssen tillhörde denna krets. Arbetet med det som skulle komma att bli Svensk stad inleddes under namnet Svensk stadsmiljö i början av 1940-talet och avsikten var då att skildra utvecklingen fram till samtiden. Det innebar att stora samtidsundersökningar gjordes i bland annat Helsingborg, med intervjuer med en lång rad personer, fotodokumentationer och observationer. Detta material kom dock aldrig till användning i böckerna.

Underlagsmaterialet till det som kom att bli Svensk stad finns tillsammans med de aldrig publicerade samtidsundersökningarna i Nordiska museets arkiv, där det ingår i två olika samlingar, dels Gregor Paulssons samling, dels Börje Hanssens samling. Karin Gustavsson presenterar på seminariet sina studier i detta hittills okända material och diskuterar frågor kring arkivet som sådant. Den bifogade artikeln ingår i antologin “I utkanter och marginaler. 31 texter om kulturhistoria” som kom ut i december 2015. Klik här…