Pen, print and communication in the eighteenth century

BookPen, print and communication in the eighteenth century

Pen, print and communication in the eighteenth century

Eighteenth-Century Worlds, 10


August 4th, 2020



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During the eighteenth century there was a growing interest in recording, listing and documenting the world, whether for personal interest and private consumption, or general record and the greater good. Such documentation was done through both the written and printed word. Each genre had its own material conventions and spawned industries which supported these practices. This volume considers writing and printing in parallel: it highlights the intersections between the two methods of communication; discusses the medium and materiality of the message; considers how writing and printing were deployed in the construction of personal and cultural identities; and explores the different dimensions surrounding the production, distribution and consumption of private and public letters, words and texts during the eighteenth-century. In combination the chapters in this volume consider how the processes of both writing and printing contributed to the creation of cultural identity and taste, assisted in the spread of knowledge and furthered personal, political, economic, social and cultural change in Britain and the wider-world. This volume provides an original narrative on the nature of communication and brings a fresh perspective on printing history, print culture and the literate society of the Enlightenment.

"An intelligently constructed volume; a fine collection that is both readable and enjoyable."
Professor Aileen Douglas, School of English, Trinity College Dublin

Author Information

Caroline Archer-Parré is Professor of Typography at Birmingham City University, Director of the Centre for Printing History & Culture and Chairman of the Baskerville Society. She is the author of The Kynoch Press, 1876-1982: the anatomy of a printing house, (British Library, 2000); Paris Underground (MBP, 2004); and Tart cards: London’s illicit advertising art (MBP, 2003). Caroline is currently Co-investigator on the AHRC-funded project, ‘Letterpress Printing: past, present, future’. Malcolm Dick is Director of the Centre for West Midlands History at the University of Birmingham. He directed two history projects in Birmingham between 2000 and 2004: the Millennibrum Project, which created a multi-media archive of post-1945 Birmingham history and Revolutionary Players which produced an online resource of the history of the West Midlands region. Malcolm has published books on Joseph Priestley, Matthew Boulton and the history of Birmingham and co-directs the Centre for Printing History & Culture.