Friday, December 15, 2006

Producing the Renaissance Text: Current Technologies of Editing in Theory and Practice

Saturday, February 3, 2007
, 10:00am
Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies
, Duke University

This conference will explore the interface between texts produced during the first 150 years of the printing press in early modern Europe and the theories and technologies of the present moment, in which forces from digitalization to the new philology have revolutionized the practice of editing. Several recent developments have converged to give this once sedate realm new excitement and urgency. A host of theoretical and practical questions as well as new knowledge about textual production in the period have been developed in the field known as History of the Book. Newly digitized databases also make it possible to rethink our understanding of the physical production of the Renaissance text. The Early English Books Online (EEBO) makes available an image of virtually every page printed in England since the beginning of printing and thus enables all students to scan the actual physical layout of pages read by readers of the Renaissance. Concurrent with the expansion of this technology there has been a revolution in assumptions about editing canonical texts and also bringing previously unedited texts before the 21st century reader, especially work written by women which remained in manuscript, or which, while printed, were never issued in modernized versions. Our conference seeks to address the questions, both theoretical and absolutely practical, facing anyone who would edit--or simply read--a Renaissance text today.

The conference will feature several distinguished specialists in the field of textual theory and editing from Duke University and other institutions. Three sessions followed by a round table discussion are being planned. Details to be announced later. Save the date!