A Paper Mind: Material Fictions and Print Afterlives, 1700-1820
Jenny’s project examines how readers interacted with periodical print in the period 1700-1820, a period that witnessed the foundation of the daily news press, the periodical essay, and monthly magazine.
By focusing on the materiality and haptic qualities of periodicals, she hopes to explore how authors and readers interacted with, and came to understand, their newly sociable world of print.
With many periodical publications consigned to wastepaper or repurposed to line trunks, hats, screens, and pie tins, those copies that survive in their original guise, or were subsequently collated and bound as books, offer vital evidence into the diverse ways in which readers interacted with the eighteenth century’s increasingly paper-oriented media landscape.
The project uses printers’ letters, book binders’ bills, and library catalogues, alongside annotated, extra-illustrated, and repaired copies of periodicals to explore the changing materiality of a supposedly ephemeral print form.