Thursday, October 05, 2006

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

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 knowledge.

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 2007.

Please direct any correspondence or enquiries to:

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