Conference: Speaking in Absence: Letters in the Digital Age

Speaking in Absence - Letters in the Digital Age

We are delighted to announce that registration for our conference is open!

The conference is a one-day, interdisciplinary, student-led conversation on how we engage with handwritten letters in the digital age. We aim to explore the potential for collaboration between academics, librarians, technicians, editors, and publishers for the creation of mutual frameworks within which to use the digital as a means to supplement the analogue. We have chosen correspondence as a vehicle for this exploration because in the age of social media, its nature raises immediate and intriguing questions about the progression from material object to digital resource.

Daytime activities at the Weston Library will include an opening lecture on editing letters by Christopher Ricks (Co-director, Boston University Editorial Institute), a panel discussion with the leaders of pioneering digital editing projects (Electronic Enlightenment, Darwin Correspondence Project, and Cultures of Knowledge), a demonstration of the process of digitizing letters by Miranda Lewis (Digital Editor, Early Modern Letters Online), a visual tour of correspondence in the Bodleian collections led by Special Collections curators, and a panel on publishing with representatives from Oxford University Press and Blackwell’s.

It will also include the launch (with discussion) of Bodleian Student Editions, a digital scholarly editing course organised as a collaboration between the Bodleian’s Department of Special Collections, Centre for Digital Scholarship, and Early Modern Letters Online, and we warmly invite students to join the discussion. There is a limited number of subsidised undergraduate bursaries available so please register quickly!

From the Weston Library, delegates will then proceed to Wolfson College for a further panel discussion with writers and directors, and drinks reception with research posters by postgraduate students.

The conference is organised by students as part of the TORCH-OCLW annual postgraduate conference competition, and is additionally sponsored by the Bodleian Libraries and Balliol Interdisciplinary Institute.

The conference fee (£45 / limited number of subsidised undergraduate places at £20) includes refreshments throughout the day (breakfast, lunch, two coffee breaks, drinks reception). The conference dinner (£30) must be booked separately. For the full programme and instructions on registration options, please click here: http://www.e-pistolary.net/speaking-in-absence/programme

If you have any questions please contact olivia.thompson@bodleian.ox.ac.uk

Helen Brown (Hertford College / Oxford University Press), Michaela Crawley (Wolfson College / Oxford Centre for Life-Writing) and Olivia Thompson (Balliol College / Bodleian Libraries)

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