CFP virtual symposium: New Directions in Indigenous Book History

One-day virtual symposium to be held on Friday, March 24, 2023

Deadline for abstracts: October 31, 2022

After the ten-year anniversary of Phillip Round’s Removable Type: Histories of the Book in Indian Country, 1663–1880 (2010) and at the twentieth anniversary of Louise Erdrich’s Books and Islands in Ojibwe Country (2003), we invite analyses, reflections, and provocations on the material book’s historical and continuing relation to Indigenous peoples and communities. We also take the occasion to mark the flourishing—though still nascent—field of scholarship on the materialities of the Indigenous book and the productive interventions such scholarship has made into the traditionally settler-oriented fields of bibliography, scholarly editing, and book history.

Though a critical attention to Indigenous print culture has done well to document and examine a wide range of media and genres used by Indigenous writers across the centuries, here we narrow the focus to books specifically. How might we define the Indigenous book? Where does Indigenous book history engage with and depart from other histories of the book? How has the book moved within and across Indigenous communities, both local and global? In what sense can the book be claimed as Indigenous?

We invite proposals for conference-length papers and non-traditional presentations that consider the following topics and others:

  • Indigenous books and the literary marketplace
  • Editing Indigenous books
  • Indigenous books in libraries, archives, and special collections
  • Indigenous artist books
  • Booksellers and collectors of Indigenous books
  • Book awards and/or banned Indigenous books
  • Digitization of Indigenous books
  • Indigenous books in translation and/or in languages other than English
  • Approaches to teaching Indigenous book history
  • Reading lists, bibliographies, and access to Indigenous books
  • Indigenous book clubs and reading groups
  • Indigenous materialisms and the book
  • Innovative methods for the study of Indigenous book history

Sponsored in part by the Andrew W. Mellon Society of Fellows in Critical Bibliography, Rare Book School

Please send abstracts (250 words) and a brief cv or biography (100 words) to Amy Gore (amy.gore@ndsu.edu) and Dan Radus (daniel.radus@cortland.edu) by October 31, 2022. Participants will be notified of their inclusion in December 2022.

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