Tuesday 7th June 2022. MAPP Library Partners workshop at the Harry Ransom Centre, University of Texas at Austin.
‘I regret that all the trouble I have taken in this work for the Hogarth Press has not been compensated by an equal amount of satisfaction’ (Clara Walker, née Woolf, to her brother Leonard, 9 August 1923)
‘Citation is how we acknowledge our debt to those who came before; those who helped us find our way when the way was obscured because we deviated from the paths we were told to follow’ (Sara Ahmed, Living a Feminist Life, 17).
In 1923, Clara Walker (née Woolf) was living with her husband in New York, trying to place works of the Hogarth Press with American publishers including Seltzer and Knopf. Her adhoc work for the press was sometimes successful, sometimes not, but was generally unknown until tagging correspondence for the Modernist Archives Publishing Project (MAPP) showed up her efforts on behalf of the Woolfs, back in London.
Feminists have long argued that feminist digital and archival projects must perform structural work to make interventions at both systemic and conceptual levels. As with other feminist archival and bibliographic projects, MAPP centres feminist interventions in its critical approach to data and the history of publishing materials. For MAPP, we’re sensitive to the roles played by female agents, scouts, editors and typists in publishing houses, aiming to re-centre these often-overlooked participants in literary publishing and production and use the landscape of digital archives to make discoverable, and accessible, a whole layer of overlooked (female) labour in publishing. At the same time, we're trying to build a feminist project with our partners that recognises the complex, sometimes contradictory workflows that go into making publishing materials more open and accessible.
This symposium, held to mark the relaunch of MAPP 2.0, invites papers and reflections on the critical interventions made by feminist curators, collectors, archivists and bibliographers that reveal a range of women in transatlantic publishing - as typists, editors and publishers, as freelance scouts, readers, translators, or agents. The focus is on networks, critical infrastructures, and uncovering the value of women’s labour in the transatlantic publishing ecosphere.
Potential topics might include:
- Women and the transatlantic/transnational book trade
- Literary agents, scouts, publishers’ readers, editors and publishers 1900-50
- The interconnections of publishing history and digital scholarship, feminist book history and DH in cultural institutions
- Feminist metadata, labour and value
- Cataloguing in collections, library history
- Feminist curation and infrastructures
The workshop is being held as part of MAPP's summer working week, funded by the AHRC and SHHRC, and will take place in person at the Harry Ransom Center, University of Texas at Austin. If you would be interested in presenting remotely, please let us know. Please send abstracts of max 250 words with a 100 word bio by Friday 13th May to Dr Nicola Wilson (University of Reading) and Kristen Wilson (University of Texas at Austin) email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org
Letter from Marjorie Thomson Joad to Roger Fry (03/08/1923) | Modernist Archives Publishing Project
Image: MS 2750/133/7
Reproduced with permission from Penguin Random House UK Archive and Library owner of the Hogarth Press archive collection, held by the University of Reading Special Collections.