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Printing press


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Printing press

  1. 1. The Printing Press as an Agent of Change CCR 633 ::: 2/15 - 2/17/11Thursday, February 17, 2011
  2. 2. Last week’s readingThursday, February 17, 2011
  3. 3. Thursday, February 17, 2011
  4. 4. ScriptoriaThursday, February 17, 2011
  5. 5. limited accessThursday, February 17, 2011
  6. 6. institutional barriersThursday, February 17, 2011
  7. 7. speed of handcraftThursday, February 17, 2011
  8. 8. Google Scholar: 11,200Thursday, February 17, 2011
  9. 9. Thursday, February 17, 2011
  10. 10. Academic Appointments • American University • University of Michigan • Alice Freeman Palmer Prof. of History • Emeritus • LOC Consultant, History of the Book • Visiting Prof., Wolfson College, OxfordThursday, February 17, 2011
  11. 11. Humanities Fellowship Trifecta • Guggenheim • National Endowment for the Humanities • RockefellerThursday, February 17, 2011
  12. 12. History of the BookThursday, February 17, 2011
  13. 13. When ideas are detached from the media used to transmit them, they are also cut off from the historical circumstances that shape them, and it becomes difficult to perceive the changing context within which they must be viewed. (24)Thursday, February 17, 2011
  14. 14. It is one thing to describe how methods of book production changed after the mid-15c or estimate rates of increased output. It is another thing to decide how access to a greater abundance or variety of written records affected ways of learning, thinking, and perceiving among literate elites. It is another to decide how laws, languages, or mental constructs were affected by more uniform texts. (9)Thursday, February 17, 2011
  15. 15. Aspects of Print Culture • dissemination • standardization • reorganization • data collection • preservation • amplification/reinforcementThursday, February 17, 2011
  16. 16. Widespread Effects • political • constitutional • ecclesiastical • economic • sociological • philosophical • literaryThursday, February 17, 2011
  17. 17. Renaissance EnlightenmentThursday, February 17, 2011
  18. 18. Kate: Eisenstein’s particular attention to rhetorical context as well as her explicit methodological and historiographical considerations simply made me happy —I can’t help but love writers who are so meticulously upfront in naming their research practices. ... Eisenstein’s insistence on locating book culture only in specific rhetorical context in specific regional and historical settings seems to be making a case against the possibility of technological determinism (which she also blatantly refutes, too). Does this methodological and historiographical choice always dismantle the technological determinism argument?Thursday, February 17, 2011
  19. 19. Evolution v RevolutionThursday, February 17, 2011
  20. 20. Rachel: Eisenstein presents many ideas that seem to be meant as a starting point for discussion rather than answers. She presents ideas that push the ‘revolution’ and the ‘evolutionary’ theories that she lays out as a dichotomy in the first chapter.  How do we get past this in reading such work?  Is she attempting to make a point for the agency of the press, something beyond for call for attention to it from historians?Thursday, February 17, 2011
  21. 21. AccessThursday, February 17, 2011
  22. 22. • Travel time • Latin v Vernacular texts • Handwriting workbooks • Speed of reproduction • Availability of copies • Individual learning (66, 72)Thursday, February 17, 2011
  23. 23. LaToya: One assumption that I wish was challenged is this idea that “typographical fixity is the prerequisite for the rapid advancement of learning” (113). This statement seems to assume that 1) typographical fixity is a requirement for learning, 2) it somehow increases the rate of learning, 3) that there is one universal concept or understanding of learning, which is Western in nature. I do not agree with any of these assumptions across the board. I think it would have been more accurate to say that in the case of the population she has used in her study this was the case.Thursday, February 17, 2011
  24. 24. Kate: How do our contemporary academic publishing practices and interactions match up (or not) with post-printing press features? What are some of the benefits and losses involved with communication exchanges regarding revisions through email?Thursday, February 17, 2011
  25. 25. CensorshipThursday, February 17, 2011
  26. 26. Technical Texts and StandardizationThursday, February 17, 2011
  27. 27. rise of modern science • Maps • Charts • Tables • Instructional manuals • TextbooksThursday, February 17, 2011
  28. 28. • improved consistency • swift corrections • taxonomy • increasing popularity of alphabetization • other aspects/implications of orderingThursday, February 17, 2011
  29. 29. Print conventions for readerly efficiency • Title page • Table of contents • Footnotes • Cross references • Page numbers • Section breaksThursday, February 17, 2011
  30. 30. Tim: But, as I look deeper, I’m more interested in noting how the more things change, the more they stay the same. Just as Walter Ong reminds us that Trithemius’s critique of books was the same as Plato’s was for writing and seems so similar to many of those critiques of we hear of texting and twitter, I was struck by moments in Eisenstein’s book where we see the rhetorical constraints placed on technology by its human use.running headers, etc.) and scribes follow suit.Thursday, February 17, 2011
  31. 31. We saw it in those Gutenberg Bible leaves. The printers had to mimic what was known. In other words, in order to gain purchase as a legitimate technology, enterprising printers had to subscribe to the visual rhetoric and stylistic conventions of scribal manuscripts. They had to live up to the current hegemonic understanding of quality. Soon, though, scribal culture was mimicking printed conventions. As the technology gains purchase, printers begin to maximize its reader-friendly possibilities (Table of Contents, running headers, etc.) and scribes follow suit.Thursday, February 17, 2011
  32. 32. and also for publicity, right up front • firm names & emblems • shop addressesThursday, February 17, 2011
  33. 33. Image shift • Engraving • Reproducibility • VeracityThursday, February 17, 2011
  34. 34. Tim: At the same time, though, standardization and replicability helped to reinstate all the worst aspects of the Enlightenment project. Such standardization allowed Jefferson to pass out many many many copies of his racist thought on blacks in his Virginia Papers. It allowed maps to become standardized in a Eurocentric lens. It allowed encyclopedias like the one Krista is studying to taxonomize knowledge from all over the globe according to a European mindset. Just as this technology democratized for some, it tightened the grips of the process of Othering. It made it more efficient, widespread, seemingly scientific.Thursday, February 17, 2011
  35. 35. Print shop as cultural centerThursday, February 17, 2011
  36. 36. Print shop as center of cultural productionThursday, February 17, 2011
  37. 37. Print shop as business.Thursday, February 17, 2011
  38. 38. Kate: How does agency function in the relationships between writer and printer in the 17th c., as described by Eisenstein? How does agency function in contemporary relationships between writers and publishers? Which is better?Thursday, February 17, 2011
  39. 39. Reordering of laborThursday, February 17, 2011
  40. 40. • Publishers • Compositors • Typefounders • Printers • Authors • Amanuenses • Mechanics • Scholars • Artists • Translators • BindersThursday, February 17, 2011
  41. 41. • copy editors • correctors • illustrators • print dealers • indexers • misc. editorial workers • delivery men • metal workers • punch cuttersThursday, February 17, 2011
  42. 42. Rachel: What other technologies act to reorder occupations and bring about new cross-scholarly works?  It seems that the printing press, and now the internet, are still the most prominent form for this sort of sharing of knowledge?  They surpass the university in my opinion, as the university is somewhat closed within its schools as compared to a library or online journals.  It rings true to me that this kind of cross-scholarly work is essential to new ideas as the author mentions, but also a potential check-and-balance for ourselves as we strive for progress, and a key to the arts in the postmodern world.Thursday, February 17, 2011
  43. 43. Typography As CraftThursday, February 17, 2011
  44. 44. CrowdsourcingThursday, February 17, 2011
  45. 45. Cultural undergroundsThursday, February 17, 2011
  46. 46. Ben: What can the history of the printing press tell us about the relationship of our current technologies to the creation of knowledge? If the printing of stable editions of books created the means for careful revision, what does the internet—with its endless possibilities for revision and creation—do to the creation and stability of knowledge? Have we lost typographical fixity? What have we gained without it?Thursday, February 17, 2011