Paper/Work: Reading Official Documents

Location
Arts Building - Lecture Room 1
Dates
Wednesday 6 March 2019 (16:00-18:00)
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Hosted by the Centre for Literary Editing and the Materiality of Text

Speaker: Oliver Herford

On paper, nothing could seem less exciting than a seminar on what Kafka called ‘the slime of bureaucracy’: official documents such as minutes, memos, records and forms. But four intrepid researchers – Asha Rogers and Emma West (UoB, English Literature), Matt Sangster (University of Glasgow) and Derek Dunne (Cardiff University) – seek to convince you otherwise. Across four papers exploring official documents from the 17th to the 20th century, our speakers will discuss how we engage with such texts as literary scholars. What theoretical or methodological questions do they raise? Are they of value not just for what they say but how they are written? How might questions of authorship, materiality, language, style and genre affect how we read them?

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