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hmmmmm.... ("cocktail hour" on Friday)



Hello everyone--

I'm a novice printer/bibliographer, and a book collector. Most of that is 
on hold while I finish my dissertation on the poet, Mina Loy(1882-1966).  
I'm also producing a critical edition of her work, and because of that 
project, I've become fascinated with the ways evidence from an artifact 
(manuscript or book) can become information which impinges upon the text 
in some way... basic lit crit and textual editing, crossed with an 
interest in history of the book.  

The whole question of what aspects of the changing shape of the book 
should be recorded by a conservator or binder is very interesting.  Isn't 
a detailed physical description of a book really the job of a 
bibliographer? It seems extreme to ask conservators to be historians.  On 
the other hand, conservators and archivists and rare book dealers always 
have much to teach people like me, in English departments, who seem to 
handle books as seldom as possible these days. Do those of you who, for 
instance, rebind or modify books in library collections ever consult 
bibliographies out of curiosity at what's been recorded, and what's gone 
unnoticed (until the book crossed your path that is?)  Just curious.  And 
what do you want to know from bibliographers, other than the standard 
info about titlepages, format (signature collation), plates, paper, type?

By the way, thank you:  it now seems to me that a book "is" a music box.
Glad to hear it all----   Marisa Januzzi  <jma5@columbia.edu>


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