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Rare Books and Manuscripts Section

IFLA-preconference in Munich
August 2009

Theme: Early printed books as material objects

In recent years, early printed books have become available in increasing numbers in electronic form through large-scale digitization projects. Such services, however, seem to lead to a shift in focus: historical books are less perceived as physical objects than as a ‚virtual entity’. Evidence for this is the tendency to link virtual reproductions to records of editions rather than individual copies in library OPACs or even to treat them as alternative forms of publications. Often, digital reproductions are presented for page-by-page browsing rather than as two-page book openings; and many digitization projects focus only on text pages and ignore preceding matter like fly-leaves and bindings.

In order to counteract such tendencies, it seems necessary to raise the awareness for the material nature of books produced in the hand-press period (incunabula to c. 1840), of the relevance of individual features for book-historical and wider cultural studies, and of ways of recording such copy-specific information in catalogue descriptions (OPACs, special databases) and linking it to digital reproductions. The conference papers should present case studies of evidence from bindings, paper, hand decoration and manuscript annotations, especially provenance notes, and discuss wider conclusions which can be drawn from them. Organizational and technological problems of recording and presenting such information should also be raised.

The conference will be organized in half-day subsections on

As it is hoped that funding for the conference will be provided by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, the papers should not exclusively focus on the library perspective, but also emphasize the real and potential use of copy-specific evidence in book-based research in any discipline.

The conference will be accompanied by an exhibition presenting highlights of the incunable collection of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek. It will also celebrate the completion of the publication of the BSB’s incunable catalogue in print and as an electronic ressource and provide an opportunity to present the project for the complete digitization of the Munich incunable collection funded by the DFG.

The pre-conference will be held immediately before the annual IFLA conference, which will be held from 22 August 2009 in Milan, Italy.

Dates: 19/08/2009 (midday) - 21/08/2009 (midday) - (departure for Milan on afternoon of 21/08/2009)
Conference language: English
Number of participants: 70 or more
Target group: Librarians involved in cataloguing, digitization and presentation of rare books (especially early printed books), book historians, conservators
Location: Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek
Deadline for proposals: 31 May 2008
Proposals should include an estimate of the speaker’s travel expenses to and from Munich and the number of days for which accommodation is required.

Please send your proposal to:
Dr. Bettina Wagner
Abteilung fuer Handschriften und Alte Drucke
Bayerische Staatsbibliothek
Ludwigstr. 16
D-80539 Muenchen
email: <bettina.wagner@bsb-muenchen.de>
Tel. +89 / 28638-2982
Fax. +89 / 28638-12982 oder 2266
postbox: D-80328 Muenchen

Copyright AIB 2008-05, aggiornamento 2008-05-05 a cura di Andrea Marchitelli.
URL: <http://www.aib.it/aib/cen/ifla/srbm0505.htm>

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