Before and After “The Text”: Reading Front and Back Matter in Early American Writing
I am assembling a Society of Early Americanists panel (Feb 28 to Mar 2, 2013) that concentrates on the front and back matter of manuscript and print writings, rather than on the “main text” itself. This panel welcomes proposals on all types of front and back matter in manuscript or print—-title page, preface, frontispiece, afterword, appendix, map, index, etc.—-and the ways in which they not only inform and complicate our understanding of the contiguous main text but also apprise us of cultural codes and discourses, reading practices and literacies, narratology, material culture, aesthetics, manuscript and print culture, the production and authorization of texts, and so on. This panel invites work in all fields of early American study and also encourages submissions that explore the use of digital technologies in reading front and back matter. A more specific focus might emerge from the direction that proposals take, though a broad range of topics would be just as rich!
Please send abstracts between 200 and 250 words to Keat Murray at firstname.lastname@example.org by April 1.
Keat Murray, Ph.D.
Department of English Literature
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