Wednesday, January 13, 2016

MLA 2017 in Philadelphia

The next MLA conference will be in Philadelphia (5–8 January 2017).

Here are the two call for papers for SHARP sessions. Please send us an abstract or share with anyone who might be interested.

1. SHARP guaranteed session
Radical Book History - People, Archives, Methods

How do we write radical book history? "Radical" book trade figures, the use of "radical" methodologies or archives. All periods and places. 250-word abstracts by 15 March 2016; Lise Jaillant (

2. CSE-SHARP Collaborative Session

Editor-author relations; editors imagining or constructing readerships; social, interactive, crowd-sourced, translated/bilingual editions; editorial epistemologies, canons, information overload;
editions in promotion/tenure; paratext, apparatus, digital/print affordances. 250-word abstracts by 11 March 2016; Anne Coldiron (

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

MLA 2016 in Austin, Texas

Time to book your tickets to Austin, Texas for the next MLA conference!

SHARP is organizing a panel on "Secret Archives: Privacy, Control, and Access", scheduled to take place at 1:45pm on 9 January 2016.

We are also co-sponsoring a reception at the Harry Ransom Center. See invitation copied below. We look forward to seeing you there!

Thursday, January 7th, 7 P.M.-9 P.M. at the Harry Ransom Center, 21st and Guadalupe Streets, The University of Texas at Austin campus

Please join the Harry Ransom Center and the Department of English at The University of Texas at Austin for a reception, co-sponsored by SHARP. Visit the exhibition Shakespeare in Print and Performance and speak with Ransom Center staff and English Department faculty. Wine and light hors d’oeuvres will be served. 

Please RSVP by December 15 to rsvp[at], attendance is limited to the first 500 attendees.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Modernist Studies Association in Boston

I am organising a panel at the next MSA conference in Boston. Speakers will include Gail McDonald, Bethany Hicok and myself.

Here is a short description:

Revolutionizing Academia: Modernism, Pedagogy and the Ivory Tower

The relationship between modernism and pedagogy has long been a central concern of New Modernist Studies. As MSA members, we are well aware of the effect of pedagogy on “modernism” and its canon. At the 2013 conference in Brighton, the seminar led by Peter Howarth also invited us to think of modernism as a kind of pedagogy. The experience of teaching and having works taught profoundly affected the imagination of modernist writers – including, of course, Ezra Pound. This panel will further the discussion by focusing on academia, an institution that many modernists regarded as hopelessly traditional and isolated from real life. “By the time their formal educations were complete, Pound and Eliot dreaded the deadening lives academia seemed to hold out of them” – as Gail McDonald put it in her pioneering monograph Learning to be Modern. “Making it new” seemed impossible in the Ivory Tower, and yet, modernists continued to be fascinated by the university system.

Responding to the theme of the 2015 conference – “Modernism and Revolution” – this panel will address modernist writers’ attempts to change pedagogy from outside academia as well as the invention of modernist studies within academia and its impact on younger writers.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Octave Uzanne, between Reaction and Modernism

I am happy to announce that my exhibition on Octave Uzanne will be shown at Senate House, London to accompany the conference Aestheticism and Decadence in the Age of Modernism: 1895 to 1945 (Friday 17 and Saturday 18 April 2015).

Octave Uzanne was a French bibliophile, writer and publisher whose work shows that Aestheticism and Decadence were anchored in the modern age.

Born in 1851, Uzanne abandoned his studies in law when he came into an heritage at the age of 21. He became friends with a group of bibliophiles, who encouraged his interest in eighteenth-century libertine works by neglected writers. As Willa Silverman puts it, "Uzanne's devotion to the France of Louis XIV and Louis XV would also lead him forward, as a proponent of the neo-Rococo aesthetic and decorative arts that at the turn of the century inspired Art Nouveau." This mix of modernism and anachronism was shared by the Goncourt brothers, whom Uzanne particularly admired.

Uzanne was also interested in applying new, industrial techniques to manufacture luxury books. His 1879 book Le Bric-à-brac de l'amour (featured in the exhibition) thus employed the new technique of gillotage, whereby an image is transferred to a zinc plate.

Uzanne did not limit himself to the re-edition of older works. His interest in the modern book led him to create three reviews: Le Livre: bibliographie moderne (1880-9), Le Livre moderne: revue du monde littéraire et des bibliophiles contemporains (1890-1), and L'Art et de l'idée: revue contemporaine du dilettantisme littéraire et de la curiosité (1892-3).

The quality of Uzanne's books was noted in the international press. Reviewing L'Ombrelle, le gant, et le manchon (featured in this exhibition), the London Times declared: "The illustrations - all admirable specimens of miniature drawing, etching, engraving, and tinting - are too good to have full justice done them in words. They should be seen." A review in the New York Times described La Femme à Paris (1894) as “a highly artistic achievement in a typographical sense, and impressively a book of the present time, of this very moment.

For more information on Octave Uzanne, visit the exhibition and read Willa Z. Silverman's excellent book, The New Bibliopolis: French Book Collectors and the Culture of Print, 1880-1914. The website is also a good resource.

The display is of books held in the Foskett Uzanne Collection at Senate House Library, University of London. I am grateful to Dr Karen Attar for her assistance. See her blog HERE.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

SHARP-sponsored panels at MLA 2016

Here are the calls for papers for the two panels sponsored by the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing (SHARP) at MLA 2016 - up and available on the MLA's CFP site.

1. SHARP affiliate-organization panel

Secret Archives:
Privacy, Control and Access “Archive stories” about the difficulties to access certain collections, and what these stories tell us about power and control. 250-word abstracts by 15 March 2015. Lise Jaillant (

Note: this is a guaranteed session.

2. Joint panel, co-sponsored with the Faulkner Society

Faulkner in the Digital Age

Roundtable: New book history/ digital humanities projects on Faulkner; Use of digital resources to teach Faulkner's work. 250-word abstracts by 15 March 2015. Lise Jaillant ( or Deborah Clarke (

The MLA convention will take place in Austin, Texas (7-10 January 2016).

Friday, December 19, 2014

MLA 2015 in Vancouver

I will be at the Modern Language Association convention in Vancouver in January. I look forward to discussing my new role as SHARP liaison to the MLA. In the following years, I will be in charge of organizing SHARP’s guaranteed and joint sessions, as well as the social events at the MLA.

On Thursday 8 January, I will be chairing this session:

Into the Digital Future: Amazon, Apple, and Google Make Book History

1. "The Book Trade from the Perspective of Its Businesses: Recent Developments," Daniel Raff, Univ. of Pennsylvania
2. "Amazon et Alia: Self-Publishing and the New Intermediaries," Timothy Laquintano, Lafayette Coll.
3. "Cocreating Fictional Worlds Online: Hugh Howey and Kindle Publishing," Carrie Sickmann Han, Indiana Univ., Bloomington
Responding: Greg Barnhisel, Duquesne Univ.

For abstracts, visit

I also look forward to seeing friends and colleagues at the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University!