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Redefining Textual Practices, c. 1400-1700

The purpose of this network is to bring together scholars working on textual practices with particular reference to practices and processes of reading and reception. The network seeks to develop current scholarly understandings of how particular types of texts were read and used by looking in detail at particular examples of books and documents in manuscript and/ or print. The emphasis is on detailed examination of individual items and small case studies in order to develop a corpus of evidence for the nature of reading and reception practices in particular situations across the period c 1400-1700.

An initial one day meeting was held in March 2007 and hosted by the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth, under the title “What is Reading? c. 1350-1550”. This brought together people from a number of institutions in the UK including Aberystwyth, Bangor, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Kent and Nottingham and from a range of disciplinary backgrounds including Literature, History, Cultural Studies, and European Languages. Three plenary speakers addressed themes particularly relevant to their current research under the broad headings of Administrative Literature, Fictive Literatures and Devotional Literatures. The speakers used examples of archival material of their own as well as items housed in the National Library of Wales to illustrate their points. Other participants to the workshop were invited to bring their own research and issues to the table during the discussion sessions.

For more information contact Dr Elisabeth Salter (English, Aberystwyth:



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