CFP: Unpacking the Library (10/30/06; collection)

full name / name of organization: 
Sas Mays
contact email: 

Call for Articles
Unpacking the Library: Literatures and their Archives.

Despite the continuing rise of memory studies in various disciplines, there is
yet no consistent, comprehensive, or metacritical publication accounting for
the library as a specific archival form.

Nevertheless, literatures involve, necessarily, if implicitly or symbolically, a
relation to the archival forms of the text---that is, traditionally speaking, a
relation to the codex and the library. This relation to textual holdings in
various (metaphorical and literal) senses clearly involves often unacknowledged
complexities of institutional, technical and cultural issues. Indeed, the
relation between writing and the library has often been problematic: the
library may appear not only as a place of memory, security, and knowledge, but
of loss, trauma, and indeterminacy. Such issues appear to be particularly apt
for these times: in the context of digitisation, the traditional forms of
textual accumulation seem to be in the process of their displacement and even
their obsolescence.

The editor welcomes papers from postdoctoral scholars which pursue a critical
analysis of literatures and their archives from a multiplicity of approaches:
classical and mediaeval memory systems; literary-critical analyses of the
figure of the library; philosophical encounters with literature and its texts;
analyses of techniques of inscription and the history of the book; analysis of
the symbolic connotations of the library from cultural studies; the appearance
of textual-archival forms within historical and contemporary art; sociological
accounts of literature and the library within public culture; architectural
readings of the library within the built environment, etc.

The publication thus aims to cover a broad historical scope---from classical
mnemonics to current issues of digitisation---via an Interdisciplinary
approach, in order to provide an original and definitive text for this field of

In the first instance, abstracts (of 500 words) or existing papers (of 7000
words aprx) should be delivered via email as Word attachments by the end of
October 2006, along with a full CV. Successful applicants will be contacted in
November. Final papers will be required for submission at the end of March

Please direct any correspondence or enquiries to:

Dr. Sas Mays
English, Linguistics and Visual Culture
University of Westminster
London, England

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Received on Thu Oct 05 2006 - 01:17:28 EDT