RBS Course H-10 Advance Reading List: The History of the Book, 200-2000

This course aims to provide an introductory vocabulary and a structure for students who wish to explore the history of books and printing. Topics include: the introduction of the manuscript codex, the growth of literate culture, the invention of movable type and the impact of printing on scholarship, science, and religion, the distribution and marketing of books, the rise of a reading public, the shift from hand- to machine-powered printing, and the move from printed to electronic formats.

The course will introduce some theoretical issues in the current scholarship on the history of books, printing, authorship, and readership, but its focus will be on developing an understanding of and appreciation for the book as material object.

The books on this list are almost all in print, and can be acquired through an online discounter such as Amazon (although Oak Knoll titles are seldom discounted, and usually come most quickly if ordered directly from Oak Knoll Books). Copies often surface on used book search engines such as viaLibri (but note that Chappell and Carter should be obtained in the most recent editions).

John Buchtel (created by)
Mark Dimunation (created by)
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