HISTORY 698 - Topics in History
Section: 002 Reading Culture, Reading Books: Gutenburg to Google
Term: FA 2017
Subject: History (HISTORY)
Department: LSA History
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
Graduate standing.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

In this seminar we will concern ourselves with what people read, how they read it, and what meanings they derived for the identity they were crafting. Our inquiry will engage issues about gender and identity, individuality and community, artifacts and meaning, ideology and power. It encompasses the entire world that can be inscribed on paper in word and image.

We will examine how the book as physical artifact has shaped the ways in which we read. We will investigate representations of reading in various historical contexts and the cultural prescriptions they convey. We will survey numerous sources for evidence on the practices and preferences of actual readers. We will also address current debates in the history of the book, including the relations between elite and popular cultures, between gender and reading, and between print and digital. We will interrogate the issue of agency for readers as well as authors and publishers. In engaging all these debates we will ask ourselves who makes a text?

Course Requirements:

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Intended Audience:

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Class Format:

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HISTORY 698 - Topics in History
Schedule Listing
001 (REC)
Tu 3:00PM - 6:00PM
002 (REC)
W 10:00AM - 1:00PM
003 (REC)
Tu 4:00PM - 7:00PM
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