The History of the Book

Edited by Sandro Jung and Stephen Colclough

Yearbook of English Studies 45

Modern Humanities Research Association

1 January 2015  •  295pp

ISBN: 978-1-781882-12-2 (paperback)

Access online: At JSTOR


Edited by Sandro Jung and Stephen Colclough, the 2015 number of the MHRA Yearbook of English Studies features contributions that investigate the materiality of texts, their advertising and marketing, as well as readerly engagements with different works that are, as part of their attempts at classification, conceived of as acts of canon formation. Extending from the late seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries, the contributions revolve around questions related to the reading and interpretation of texts, the shaping of authorial reputations, and the role that booksellers and/or publishers played in introducing new print objects into a highly competitive marketplace for print commodities. Devoted to the subject of ‘The History of the Book’, the essays in this volume examine texts that range from the cheaply produced ego documents for daily use (such as almanacs and pocket diaries) to the conceptual artist Brian Dettmer’s extremely limited edition sculpted volumes. Essays investigate the functions of printed visual culture, the significance of illustrations for cultural literacy, and the interrelationship between engraved image and typographical text. Booksellers’ decisions to promote paratextual interpretations of literary texts are discussed in contributions on eighteenth-century anthologies, the illustrations to Thomas Baker’s Royal Engagement Pocket Atlas, and early twentieth-century illustrated editions of Shakespeare. While paratextual readings furnished by editors and designers are central to a number of the essays, the uses of print forms, as well as the collecting of books, are investigated by others. Contributors consider seventeenth-century illustrated media such as commemorative broadsheets and offer considerations of the significance of jobbing printing and paper-based ephemera in the eighteenth-century marketplace. Essays on Charles Dickens and Catharine Sedgwick study the transatlantic travels of books –– often through the medium of pirate editions –– and the ways in which publishers sought to make a profit by reprinting works, both with and without the authors’ permission. The volume’s concern with the production, history and different ways of reading literature is illustrated by detailed examinations of both canonical works in codex format and alternative print objects not usually considered by literary historians.


Sandro Jung, Stephen Colclough
The Times Displayed: Late Seventeenth-Century English Commemorative Broadsheets and Media Hybridity
Margaret J. M. Ezell
Choice Reading: Anthologies, Reading Practices and the Canon, 1680–1800
Barbara M. Benedict
Why Ephemera Were Not Ephemeral: The Effectiveness of Innovative Print in the Eighteenth Century
James Raven
Book-Collecting and Literature in Eighteenth-Century Britain
David Allan
Generous Liberal-Minded Men: Booksellers and Poetic Careers in Johnson's Lives of the Poets
Jack Lynch
Furnishings: English and Scottish Poetry Series in the Late Eighteenth Century
Thomas F. Bonnell
Thomas Stothard, Milton and the Illustrative Vignette: The Houghton Library Designs for The Royal Engagement Pocket Atlas
Sandro Jung
Pocket Books and Portable Writing: The Pocket Memorandum Book in Eighteenth-Century England and Wales
Stephen Colclough
Tracking Pirates through the Digital Archive: The Case of Dickens
Mary Hammond
American Novelist Catharine Sedgwick Negotiates British Copyright, 1822–57
Melissa J. Homestead
Shakespeare in Colour: Illustrated Editions, 1908–14
Stuart Sillars
Readers and Reading in the First World War
Sandro Jung, Stephen Colclough
Visualizing Books, Virtualizing Readers
Garrett Stewart

Bibliography entry:

Jung, Sandro, and Stephen Colclough (eds), The History of the Book (= Yearbook of English Studies, 45.1 (2015))

First footnote reference: 35 The History of the Book, ed. by Sandro Jung and Stephen Colclough (= Yearbook of English Studies, 45.1 (2015)), p. 21.

Subsequent footnote reference: 37 Jung and Colclough, p. 47.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)

Bibliography entry:

Jung, Sandro, and Stephen Colclough (eds). 2015. The History of the Book (= Yearbook of English Studies, 45.1)

Example citation: ‘A quotation occurring on page 21 of this work’ (Jung and Colclough 2015: 21).

Example footnote reference: 35 Jung and Colclough 2015: 21.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)

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