Course description ∙ There are almost innumerable ways of looking at books quite apart from reading them. Using materials from the fifteenth century onwards, this class will consider how different physical aspects of books can guide us towards a better understanding of their purposes, their manufacture and marketing, their reception by readers, and the ever-changing values set on them generation by generation.
Recommended reading: D.F.McKenzie, 'History of the book,' in Peter Davison (ed.), The book encompassed; studies in twentieth-century bibliography (Cambridge University Press, 1992), pp.290-301.
Professor David McKitterick, emeritus Honorary Professor of Historical Bibliography in the University of Cambridge, was for many years Librarian of Trinity College, Cambridge. He has written extensively on libraries, collecting and book design. His books include the standard 3-volume A history of Cambridge University Press, a study of the long transition from manuscript to print, Print, Manuscript and the Search for Order, 1450-1830 (2003), and Old Books, New Technologies; the Representation, Conservation and Transformation of Books since 1700 (2013). His latest book, The Invention of Rare Books, is due to be published this summer.