This course considers what might constitute a feminist approach to studying books, what the benefits of such approaches are, and how to incorporate them into our own work.
We will take a wide stance towards “bibliography,” including the consideration of textual objects as material artifacts, the people involved in the long history of book trades, the academic field of print culture and textual editing, and the intersection of these with library practices. We will also wrestle with the theory and practice of feminism, which has a history of different meanings for different communities, and how to develop it as an inclusive practice for our book work.
Through a combination of short advance readings about bibliography and feminism, seminar discussions, and hands-on work with textual artifacts at UCLA and other area collections, we will explore what questions are brought to the forefront when we approach our work through a feminist framework. Discussions and exercises will also explore different models of pedagogy in order to give participants a feel for what methodologies might suit them best.
Participants should not expect to come out of the course having mastered a feminist history of books, but to leave with a set of tools to ask feminist questions of books.
Years taught: 2021 by Sarah Werner