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DepositHistory of printing – From Gutenberg to the Laser Printer

The ultimate cause of much historical, social and cultural change is the gradual accumulation of knowledge of the environment. Human beings use the materials in their environment to meet their needs and increased human knowledge of the environment enables human needs to be met in a more efficient manner. Humans have a need to communicate, as they are social beings, and the development of printing enabled them to communicate in a more efficient manner. The human environment has a particular structure so that human knowledge of the environment is acquired in a particular order. The simplest knowledge is acquired first and more complex knowledge is acquired later. Inevitably, printing was invented after the invention of writing, as it is a more efficient way of writing. Printing, as developed in Europe in the 15th century, also required the prior invention of paper, the knowledge of which had spread from China, and of moveable metal type, inks and presses. The order of discovery determined the course of human social and cultural history as knowledge of new and more efficient means of communication, resulted in the spread of new scientific ideas and technology, and in the development of new social and ideological ideas, such as the reformation, the enlightenment and democracy. This means human social and cultural history, has to follow a particular course, a course that is determined by the structure of the human environment.

DepositSocial Network Centralization Dynamics in Print Production in the Low Countries, 1550-1750

The development of a professionalized, highly centralized printmaking industry in northern Europe during the mid-sixteenth century has been argued to be the inevitable result of prints’ efficacy at reproducing images, and thus encouraging mass production. However, it is unclear whether such a centralized structure was truly inevitable, and if it persisted through the seventeenth century. This paper uses network analysis to infer these historical print production networks from two large databases of existing prints in order to characterize whether and how centralization of printmaking networks changed over the course of this period, and how these changes may have influenced individual printmakers.

DepositContinuity and Disruption in European Networks of Print Production, 1550-1750

Computational analysis of the potential historical professional networks inferred from surviving print impressions offers novel insight into the evolution of early modern artistic printmaking in Europe. This analysis traces a longue durée print production history that examines the changing ways in which different regional printmaking communities interacted between 1550 and 1750, highlighting the powerful impact of demographic forces and calling in to question narratives based on single key individuals or the emergence of specific national schools.

DepositFrom Sensuous to Sexy: The Librarian in Post-Censorship Print Pornography

This chapter argues that the sexy librarian stereotype emerged at the end of the twentieth century from the confluence between sexual liberation, free speech movements and print pornography. It focuses on a series of librarian themed pornographic paperbacks published in the 1970s and 1980s by Greenleaf Classics. These stories, although flimsy plot-wise, tend to be obsessed with the idea of liberating stuffy librarians from the shackles of sexual conservatism, thereby dramatizing some of the social struggles surrounding obscenity cases and the move to deregulate print materials.

Deposit“Printing” the Ruthenian Identity: An Examination of Polemics in 17th Century Ukraine

The origin and evolution of the Ukrainian identity is a widely-discussed topic with a rich and contentious historiography. Many scholars have revisited this topic in the aftermath of the 2013-2014 Euromaidan events and subsequent conflict with Russia in Ukraine’s Donbass. These events have raised new questions about Ukraine’s historical relationship to Russia and how the Ukrainian “narod” conceives of its national identity as separate but equal to its Russian counterpart. A peculiar but under-examined element that sets the Ukrainian identity apart from the Russian identity is the role of the printing press in the development of the two peoples’ histories. This paper seeks to establish the printing press as a crucial contributing factor in the consolidation of a Ruthenian identity in the 17th century Ukrainian lands.

DepositUnder Pressure: Reading Material Textuality in the Recovery of Early African American Print Work

From 1756 until his death in the early 1790s, Primus Fowle, an enslaved African American, performed typographical and press work involved the in the publication of The New-Hampshire Gazette and other materials printed at the press owned by Daniel Fowle. With the archive of print Primus Fowle created as its object of study, this essay historicizes the exclusion of enslaved people from the study of the history of the book, and theorizes a method of reading non-alphabetic marks in the material texts through which we encounter the presence of figures like Primus Fowle.

DepositTransatlantic Sensationalism and the First Printing of Rubén Darío’s ‘A Roosevelt’.

Nicaraguan poet Rubén Darío once posed the following question concerning the effects of U.S. domination of Cuba 15 years following the Spanish American War: “¿Qué espectáculo ofrece hoy día ese pueblo al espectador imparcial? El de una colonia disimulada donde a las aspiraciones de veinte años de lucha ha sucedido un oscuro servilismo al oro yanqui” (“Refutación” 111). Darío suggests that readers visually perceive the situation, that they trust “impartial spectators” in order to truly comprehend the U.S. domination in the region. Spectacles are events based on the optics of the consuming observers; viewers who, at their own leisure, decipher visual productions and performances. Unsurprisingly, Darío himself is the informed spectator and enlightens readers to the colonialist and financial burdens imposed on Cuba. The poet continually implemented this didactic maneuver to uncover the “spectacles” of U.S. domination following el desastre of 1898. The spectacle of the “lucha” of U.S.-Latin American relations, as construed by Darío, is no more evident than in the first printing of his seminal poem “A Roosevelt” in Madrid magazine Helios in 1904.