Writers and their Libraries

15 - 16 March 2013

An International Conference

Institute of English Studies, Senate House, University of London

This conference in the History of Reading will bring together scholars working on the private libraries of some of the major literary figures in world literature. The aim of the conference is to explore reading habits, note-taking practices, marginalia and other traces of reading experience and book collecting in a comparative context. At the same time, the conference will offer a forum for the discussion of theories and methodologies that underpin this kind of research, as well as the problems and challenges of reclaiming, representing and editing the evidence of reading writers and writing readers from the archive. The Twitter hashtag for this conference will be #writerslibs.

Conference blog: http://writersandtheirlibraries.wordpress.com/



9.00-9.30 Registration: Chancellor's hall, 1st Floor Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
9.30-10.00 Welcome and Introduction

Panel 1: Reading - Writing - Reading: Genetic Criticism and Marginalia I
Thomas Brobjer (Uppsala Universitet): 'Nietzsche's Reading Relevant for Der Antichrist'

Patricio Ferrari (Universidade de Lisboa / Stockholms Universitet): 'Fernando Pessoa's Chatterton'

Warwick Gould (Institute of English Studies, University of London): 'The Library of W.B. Yeats'

11.30-11.50 Coffee

Panel 2A: Virtual Libraries / Reconstructed Libraries I

Catherine Volpilhac-Auger (Université de Lyon): 'La bibliothèque virtuelle Montesquieu'

Beth Lau (California State University): 'Keats's Library'

Helen Chambers (The Open University): 'Reconstructing Joseph Conrad’s Library from Multiple Sources of Evidence:  The Gap between Evidence of Reading and Ownership of Books'

Panel 2B: Reading Habits / Collecting Habits

Robert Heyes (John Clare Society): 'John Clare’s Library'

Ben De Bruyn (University of Leuven): 'American Readers at Home: Tradition, Lifestyle and Libraries'

Anne Welsh (University College London): 'The Poet's Poet: Collections and Anthologies in Walter de la Mare's Working Library'

13.20-14.30 Lunch (own arrangements)

Panel 3A: Reading - Writing - Reading: Genetic Criticism and Marginalia II

Hélène de Jacquelot (Università di Pisa): 'Stendhal en apprentissage: Pratiques de lecture et d’écriture'

Pauly Ellen Bothe (Universidade de Lisboa): 'Books and Poems: the making of José Gorostiza’s "Muerte sin fin"'

Gabriele Wix (Universität Bonn): 'From a Punk and Postmodern Point of View: Grandfather's Bookcase. The Function of the Library for Authorship in the Work of German Poet Thomas Kling (1957–2005)'

Panel 3B: Between Languages, Between Disciplines

Andy Wimbush (Darwin College, University of Cambridge): 'The Consolations of Philosophy and the Vindications of Literature: Samuel Beckett’s Quietist Library'

Annet den Haan (Rijksuniversiteit Groningen):  'Giannozzo Manetti’s New Testament'

16.00-16.30 Coffee

Panel 4: Virtual Libraries / Reconstructed Libraries II
Leah Knight (Brock University): 'Reading Anne Clifford Reading'

Christopher M. Ohge (University of Maine): 'Paul Bowles's Sources, Analogues, and Private Library: A Case Study in Building a Virtual Library'

Shafquat Towheed (The Open University): 'Edith Wharton's Libraries'


Plenary Lecture

John Coffin Memorial Lecture in the History of the Book by Dirk Van Hulle (Universiteit Antwerpen): 'Writers’ Libraries and the Extended Mind'

Followed by a wine reception.



Plenary Lecture

Heather Jackson (University of Toronto): 'The Special Relationship: Writers and their Marginalia'

10.30-10.50 Coffee

Panel 5A: Alter Egos, Blurred Margins

Catherine McKenna (King's College London): 'Blurring the Lines between Fiction and Document: An Examination of the 'Invisible Literatures' of the Library of J.G. Ballard'

Telê Ancona Lopes (Universidade de Sao Paulo): 'Mario de Andrade’s Macunaíma begun in Koch-Grünberg’s book'

João Dionísio (Universidade de Lisboa): 'Von Gribskov according to Rilke'

Panel 5B: Group Marginalia / Marginalia and Literary Criticism

Lucy Ella (Surrey University): 'The Watts' Secret Library: The Readings and Writings of George and Mary Watts'

Mary Erica Zimmer (Boston University): 'Terms of Engagement: Geoffrey Hill's Annotations of T.S. Eliot's The Sacred Wood)

Eva Nieto McAvoy (Birkbeck College, University of London): 'Scrapbooks of Exile: The Spanish-British Library of Arturo Barea (1939-1957)


Sandwich lunch provided


Panel 6A: Comparing Libraries / Libraries within Libraries

Karen Attar (Senate House Library, University of London): 'A Writer and His Library: Augustus de Morgan'

Stephen H. Gregg (Bath Spa University): 'Virtual Conversation in the Library of Bishop Ricard Hurd'

Richard W. Oram (Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin): 'Writers’ Libraries: A Curatorial Perspective'

Panel 6B: Theories of Reading, Theories of Readers

John C. Orr (University of Portland): 'Marginalia in the Library of Henry Adams: Sites of Contestation'

Wim Van Mierlo (Institute of English Studies, University of London): 'Revision in the Margins: T. Sturge Moore and the Social Theory of Reading'

Cristina Piña (Universidad de Mar del Plata): 'Discovering Alejandra Pizarnik’s Private Library: Borges, Gide, Salinas and the Theory of Rewriting and Plagiarizing Tradition'

15.00-15.30 Coffee

Panel 7A: Reading with a Purpose / The Purpose of Reading

Hugh Adlington (University of Birmingham): 'John Donne's Books: Reading, Writing and the Uses of Knowledge'

Tom Ue (University College London): 'Becoming Gissing: Shakespeare and the Staging of Love's Labour's Lost'

Frances White (Kingston University): 'Meanings of Marginalia: Iris Murdoch's Oxford Library'

Panel 7B: Professional Libraries / Libraries of Professionals

Stanton J. Linden (Washington State University): 'Henry Power (c. 1626-1668) and MS. Sloane 1346: The Life and Library of a Northcountry Doctor'

José Antonio Amaya (Universidad Nacional de Colombia): 'Ensayo comparativo del Fondo Mutis con otros Fondos y Colecciones de su Tiempo'

Edmund G.C. King (The Open University): 'E.W. Hornung: A Writer and His YMCA Soldiers' Library during World War I'


Panel 8: Tracing Traces in the Private Library

Carmen Peraita (Villanova University): 'Quevedo's Books and His Marginal Annotations'

Vanda Anastácio (University of Lisbon): 'In search of a Woman’s Library: The Books of the Marquise of Alorna in the Library of the Fronteira Palace”

Adam Smyth (Birkbeck College, University of London): 'Consuming Texts: Ben Jonson's Library Fire of 1623'


Jon Millington, Events Officer, Institute of English Studies, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU; tel + 44(0) 207 664 4859; Email IESEvents@sas.ac.uk .

The School of Advanced Study is part of the central University of London. The School takes its responsibility to visitors with special needs very seriously and will endeavour to make reasonable adjustments to its facilities in order to accommodate the needs of such visitors. If you have a particular requirement, please feel free to discuss it confidentially with the Evenst Officer in advance of the event taking place.