ENG 5933: The History of the Book
Weekly Schedule of Readings and Exercises


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Class August Topics, Readings, & Assignments
1 Tues. 28
  • Topic: Introduction to the Course
  • Video: Gary Frost and Terry Belanger, “How to Operate a Book.”
2 Thurs. 30
  • Topic: FSU Special Collections
  • Activity: We will meet in Special Collections, First Floor, Strozier Library
Class September Topics, Readings, & Assignments
3 Tues. 4
4 Thurs. 6

§ From Antiquity to Gutenberg

5 Tues. 11
6 Thurs. 13
7 Tues. 18
  • Topic: Paleography and Orality
  • Resource: Medieval Writing
  • Reading: McKenzie, D.F. “The Sociology of a Text: Oral Culture, Literacy, and Print in Early New Zealand,” in Bibliography and the Sociology of Texts, 1986. Available through netLibrary

§ The Hand-Press Period

8 Thurs. 20
9 Tues. 25
10 Thurs. 27
  • Topic: Format and Imposition
  • Reading: Febvre/Martin, chapt. 2 (pp. 45-76)
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 78-117
Class October Topics, Readings, & Assignments
11 Tues. 2
  • Topic: Type
  • Reading: Febvre/Martin, chapt. 3 (pp. 77-108)
  • Video: Stan Nelson, From Punch to Printing Type, 1985
  • Resource: National Diet Library, Dawn of Western Printing: Incunabula
12 Thurs. 4
  • Topic: Type and Composition
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 9-56
13 Tues. 9
  • Topic: Presswork
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 118-141
  • Reading: Moran, James, Printing Presses, 1973, chapts. 1-2 (pp. 17-47). In-class use
14 Thurs. 11
  • Topic: Presswork
  • Video: The Making of a Renaissance Book, 1969
15 Tues. 16
  • Topic: Overall Production
  • Reading: Blayney, The First Folio of Shakespeare, 1991
  • Reading: Febvre/Martin, chapts. 4-5 (pp. 109-66)
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 142-70
16 Thurs. 18
  • Topic: The Book Trade
  • Reading: Febvre/Martin, chapt. 6 (pp. 167-215)
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 171-86
17 Tues. 23
  • Topic: The Book Trade
  • Reading: Febvre/Martin, chapt. 7 (pp. 216-47)
  • Reading: John Feather, A History of British Publishing, 1988, pts. 1-2. Available through netLibrary
18 Thurs. 25
  • Topic: The Printing Press as an Agent of Change
  • Reading: Eisenstein, all
  • Reading: Febvre/Martin, chapt. 8 (pp. 248-332)
19 Tues. 30

§ The Machine-Press Period

Class November Topics, Readings, & Assignments
20 Thurs. 1
  • Topic: Descriptive Bibliography of Hand-Press Books
  • Resource: Gaskell, pp. 374-80
21 Tues. 6
  • Topic: Plates and Type
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 189-213
22 Thurs. 8
23 Tues. 13
  • Topic: Printing Machines
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 251-65
  • Reading: Moran, James, Printing Presses, 1973, chapts. 3-16 (pp. 49-222). On-reserve at Strozier Library
24 Thurs. 15
  • Topic: Illustration Processes
  • Reading: Gaskell, pp. 266-88
25 Tues. 20
Holiday : Thanksgiving Holiday

§ The Digital Book

26 Tues. 27
27 Thurs. 29
Class December Topics, Readings, & Assignments
28 Tues. 4
Progress Marker
29 Thurs. 6

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