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The book in the Renaissance

Monday 1 June 2015, 6.30PM

Speaker(s): Dr Helen Smith, Department of English and Related Literature

The European Renaissance was the great age of the book, witnessing profound changes in media technologies and distribution, and producing some of the finest books ever made in both manuscript and print. In this richly-illustrated lecture, Dr Helen Smith explores how the book became an object of aesthetic, literary, and philosophical attention, which fascinated illuminators and painters, poets and collectors, and early scientists alike. Introducing the audience to a band of unlikely guides from the fields of animal studies, anthropology, the history of science, and cognitive neuroscience, Helen will explore the varieties of physical and imaginative craft that went into producing books and their representations.

Entering into the space of the scriptorium and the printing house, as well as readerly closets, studies, and laboratories, Helen will investigate the kinds of embodied knowledge that went into creating a rich range of texts. Finally, she will ask how books shape their readers and users, demonstrating that early modern books were not simply sources of textual knowledge, but were themselves experimental and cognitive resources that shaped the way in which artists, scientists, and philosophers saw the world around them.

Please see University's Public Lecture website for further details and booking information.

Location: Ron Cooke Hub Auditorium

Admission: by free ticket only.