Workshop: Reading the Material Book, November 17th 3-5pm, Free Library of Philadelphia

Free Library of Philadelphia Lewis T660, Box 19

The Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies at the University of Pennsylvania is pleased to sponsor a workshop for faculty and graduate students led by Erik Kwakkel, Associate Professor in medieval manuscript studies at Leiden University, The Netherlands. The workshop will be held in the Rare Books Department, Forth Floor of the Free Library of Philadelphia Parkway Central Library (1901 Vine Street), Thursday, November 17th, 3pm-5pm. Spots are limited and pre-registration is required. Register here.

This workshop focuses on the medieval manuscript as a physical object. It shows how its material features can be made important to researchers that are not primarily interested in the manuscript itself. How may students and faculty in English, French, History and other disciplines benefit from the manuscript beyond the text it holds? What can we get out of the object by reading its physical format? To address these questions the workshop will present ‘real-world’ case studies and use examples from the collections of the Free Library.

The workshop is held in association with the 9th Annual Lawrence J. Schoenberg Symposium on Manuscript Studies in the Digital Age, Reactions: Medieval/Modern. We hope you will stay after the workshop to attend the Opening Reception and Keynote Address by Michelle Brown, Professor emerita of Medieval Manuscript Studies at the School of Advanced Study, University of London: “From King Athelstan to Game of Thrones: Responses to the Early Manuscript Culture of Britain and Ireland across the Ages.”


Dr. Erik Kwakkel is Associate Professor in medieval manuscript studies at Leiden University, The Netherlands. Among his publications are articles, book chapters and monographs on a variety of manuscript-related topics. In 2010-2015 he was principal investigator of the research project ‘Turning Over a New Leaf: Manuscript Innovation in the Twelfth-Century Renaissance’. He was the 2014 E.A. Lowe Lecturer in Palaeography at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, and in 2015 he was elected as a member of the Comité international de paleographie latine.

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