Edited by Kathryn Kerby-Fulton, John J. Thompson, and Sarah Baechle
This volume gathers the contributions of senior and junior scholars—all indebted to the pathbreaking work of Derek Pearsall—to showcase new research prompted by his rich and ongoing legacy as a literary critic, editor, and seminal founder of Middle English manuscript studies. The contributors aim both to honor Pearsall’s work in the field he established and to introduce the complexities of interdisciplinary manuscript studies to students already familiar with medieval literature.
The contributors explore a range of issues, from the study of medieval literary manuscripts to the history of medieval books, libraries, literacy, censorship, and the social classes who used the books and manuscripts—nobles, children, schoolmasters, priests, merchants, and more. In addressing reading practices, essays provide a wealth of information on marginal commentaries, images and interpretive methods, international transmission, and early print and editorial methods.
Contributors: Sarah Baechle, Julia Boffey, Peter Brown, Katie Ann-Marie Bugyis, Christopher Cannon, A. I. Doyle, Martha W. Driver, Siân Echard, Nicole Eddy, A. S. G. Edwards, Hilary E. Fox, Karrie Fuller, Maura Giles-Watson, Phillipa Hardman, Kathryn Kerby-Fulton, Jill Mann, William Marx, Sarah McNamer, Carol M. Meale, Linne Mooney, Melinda Nielsen, Theresa O’Byrne, Stephen Partridge, Oliver Pickering, Susan Powell, Elizabeth Scala, A. C. Spearing, John J. Thompson, Edward Wheatley, Jocelyn Wogan-Browne, Hannah Zdansky, Nicolette Zeeman.
“New Directions in Medieval Manuscript Studies and Reading Practices marks the heritage of the distinguished scholar Derek Pearsall while highlighting his continuing influence on medieval manuscript studies. Buoyed by fine work of senior scholars, the collection also introduces readers to stimulating work by an upcoming generation of more recent practitioners, all of whom address crucial issues in the field: the particulars of individual manuscripts, including scribal practice, marginal commentary, and audience reception. The result is a fine collection at once canonical in some respects and innovative in others." — Paul H. Strohm, Anna S. Garbedian Professor Emeritus of the Humanities, Columbia University
“As a tribute to a distinguished scholar, this volume of essays could hardly be finer. Assembled from contributions presented in London at the 2011 conference in honour of the 80th birthday of Derek Pearsall, the range and diversity of subjects covered are as absorbing as the work of the man himself.” — The Review of English Studies
“On balance, this [is] a finely produced collection with many accomplished contributions. It will reward readers’ exploration.” — Modern Philology