Adopt a Book: Writing the Lives of Bangor’s Rare Printed Objects
Run by School of Arts, Culture and Language
15.000 Credits or 7.500 ECTS Credits
Organiser: Dr Eben Muse
Overall aims and purpose
This module will aim to help students achieve:
A sophisticated understanding of the concept of book production, dissemination, use, and ownership in early and modern contexts.
An informed critical understanding of Bangor's Archival resources, and the practicalities of archival study more generally.
A sophisticated understanding of the salient features of rare book objects, including bookplates, stamps, labels, shelfmarks, and manuscript inscriptions.
Bangor University’s Archives and Special Collections offer a wealth of potentially untapped resources, especially in terms of its collections of rare printed books. ‘Adopt a Book: Writing the Lives of Bangor’s Rare Printed Objects’ aims to explore the potentials embodied by these collections.
Students on this module will be assigned one of Bangor’s rare printed books, and over the course of the semester, they will write a ‘biography’ or ‘life story’ for that object. Students will photograph, and produce physical descriptions of, their adopted book objects, under the guidance of the module co-ordinator (Durrant), narrativizing the story of its publication, dissemination, use, and acquisition.
As students advance through the module, slowly building their book ‘biography’, they will be introduced to the necessary skills of physical description, and key theoretical concerns related to the materialities of the printed codex, book use, and book dissemination and collection. At the end of the module, students will present their ‘biographies’ at a semester-end colloquium, and their findings will be posted to the website for the Stephen Colclough Centre for the History and Culture of the Book.
B/60%+: A candidate’s work reaching Merit will show many of the following qualities: • An advanced level of factual knowledge. • Significant [substantial] knowledge of relevant theories and types of analysis. • Some evidence of original thought. • The ability to organise and argue effectively, make balanced judgements, and demonstrate critical thought. • Fluent and accurate expression. • Competent use of quotation and references.
A/70%+ Typically, the work of a candidate reaching Distinction will show many of the following qualities: • Thorough knowledge and understanding of relevant theories and types of analysis. • Thorough knowledge of a range of sources and the capacity to engage these critically. • Introduction and discussion of original ideas. • Relevant, well-organised and sophisticated argument. • High ratio of analysis to exposition. • Maturity, clarity and cogency of expression. • Excellent handling of quotation and references
A Pass (C/50%) candidate’s work will show many of the following qualities: • A satisfactory level of knowledge, analysis and expression. • Some familiarity with, and understanding of, relevant theoretical issues. • Generally sound organisation of argument, with some critical ability. • Accurate expression. • Competent use of quotation and references.
Understand and build a critical vocabulary to physically describe items Bangor University's rich collection of European books printed between the 1450s and around 1800.
Critically engage with different scholarly understandings of book use, book collecting, and book dissemination.
Arm students with the tools needed for identifying and interpreting manuscript marginalia, and how books mean through their physical expression.
|Written assignment, including essay||Book Biography: Your Case Study||100.00|
Teaching and Learning Strategy
Each week, students will meet in Bangor Archive's study room, working hands-on with rare book objects.
- Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
- Numeracy - Proficiency in using numbers at appropriate levels of accuracy
- Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
- Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
- Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
- Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
- Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
- Critical analysis & Problem Solving - Able to deconstruct and analyse problems or complex situations. To find solutions to problems through analyses and exploration of all possibilities using appropriate methods, rescources and creativity.
- Safety-Consciousness - Having an awareness of your immediate environment, and confidence in adhering to health and safety regulations
- Presentation - Able to clearly present information and explanations to an audience. Through the written or oral mode of communication accurately and concisely.
- Teamwork - Able to constructively cooperate with others on a common task, and/or be part of a day-to-day working team
- Mentoring - Able to support, help, guide, inspire and/or coach others
- Caring - Showing concern for others; caring for children, people with disabilities and/or the elderly
- Management - Able to utilise, coordinate and control resources (human, physical and/or financial)
- Argument - Able to put forward, debate and justify an opinion or a course of action, with an individual or in a wider group setting
- Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others
- Leadership - Able to lead and manage, develop action plans and objectives, offer guidance and direction to others, and cope with the related pressures such authority can result in
Resource implications for students
No resource implications.
Courses including this module
Compulsory in courses:
- Q3RS: MA Publishing and Book Culture year 1 (MA/PBC)