West Virginia University Press, 2006
One of the great triumphs of nineteenth-century philology was the development of the wide array of comparative data that underpins the grammars of the Old Germanic dialects, such as Old English, Old Icelandic, Old Saxon, and Gothic. These led to the reconstruction of Common Germanic and Proto-Germanic languages. Many individuals have forgotten that scholars of the same period were interested in reconstructing the body of ancient law that was supposedly shared by all speakers of Germanic. Stefan Jurasinski's Ancient Privileges: Beowulf, Law, and the Making of the Germanic Antiquity recounts how the work of nineteenth-century legal historians actually influenced the editing of Old English texts, most notably Beowulf, in ways that are still preserved in our editions. This situation has been a major contributor to the archaizing of Beowulf. In turn, Jurasinski's careful analysis of its assumptions in light of contemporary research offers a model for scholars to apply to a number of other textual artifacts that have been affected by what was known as the historische Rechtsschule. At the very least, it will change the way you think about Beowulf.

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Behind the Book
Eleven Authors on Their Path to Publication
Chris Mackenzie Jones
University of Chicago Press, 2018
Every book has a story of its own, a path leading from the initial idea that sparked it to its emergence into the world in published form. No two books follow quite the same path, but all are shaped by a similar array of market forces and writing craft concerns as well as by a cast of characters stretching beyond the author.
Behind the Book explores how eleven contemporary first-time authors, in genres ranging from post-apocalyptic fiction to young adult fantasy to travel memoir, navigated these pathways with their debut works. Based on extensive interviews with the authors, it covers the process of writing and publishing a book from beginning to end, including idea generation, developing a process, building a support network, revising the manuscript, finding the right approach to publication, building awareness, and ultimately moving on to the next project. It also includes insights from editors, agents, publishers, and others who helped to bring these projects to life.
Unlike other books on writing craft, Behind the Book looks at the larger picture of how an author’s work and choices can affect the outcome of a project. The authors profiled in each story open up about their challenges, mistakes, and successes. While their paths to publication may be unique, together they offer important lessons that authors of all types can apply to their own writing journeys.

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Behind the Curtain of Scholarly Publishing
Editors in Writing Studies
Greg Giberson
Utah State University Press, 2022
Until now there has been little consideration of the intellectual and historical impact editors have had on the young and ever-evolving field of writing studies. Behind the Curtain of Scholarly Publishing provides new and seasoned scholars with behind-the-scenes explorations and expositions of the history of scholarly editing and the role of the scholarly editor from the perspectives of current and former editors from important publications within the field.
Each chapter in the collection examines the unique experiences and individual contributions of its authors during their time as editors, offering advice to scholars and potential editors on how to navigate the publication process and understand editorial roles. The contributors provide multiple perspectives on the growth, transformation, and, in some cases, founding of some of the most influential publishing venues in writing studies.
The personal and historical narratives, along with the unique perspectives and insightful analyses of the individual authors in Behind the Curtain of Scholarly Publishing, offer needed transparency and context to what has historically been an opaque, yet inevitable and consequential, part of academic life. This volume will help researchers in the field understand the publishing process.
Contributors: Cheryl Ball, David Bartholomae, Charles Bazerman, Jean Ferguson Carr, Douglas Eyman, Muriel Harris, Byron Hawk, Alice Horning, Paul Kei Matsuda, Laura Micciche, Mike Palmquist, Michael Pemberton, Malea Powell, Kelly Ritter, Victor Villanueva, Victor Vitanza, Kathleen Blake Yancey

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Beowulf and the Beowulf Manuscript
Kevin S. Kiernan
University of Michigan Press, 1997
The story of Beowulf and his hard-fought victory over the monster Grendel has captured the imagination of readers and listeners for a millennium. The heroic Anglo-Saxon story survives to the world in one eleventh-century manuscript that was badly burned in 1731, and in two eighteenth-century transcriptions of the manuscripts.
Kevin S. Kiernan, one of the world's foremost Beowulf scholars, has studied the manuscript extensively with the most up-to-date methods, including fiber-optic backlighting and computer digitization. This volume reprints Kiernan's earlier study of the manuscript, in which he presented his novel conclusions about the date of Beowulf. It also offers a new Introduction in which the author describes the value of electronic study of Beowulf, and a new Appendix that lists all the letters and parts of letters revealed by backlighting.
This important volume will be a must-read not only for the scholar of early English history and literature, but for all those who are interested in practical applications of the new technologies.

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Canons by Consensus
Critical Trends and American Literature Anthologies
Joseph Csicsila, with a foreword by Tom Quirk
University of Alabama Press, 2004

The first systematic analysis of American literature textbooks used by college instructors in the last century

Scholars have long noted the role that college literary anthologies play in the rising and falling reputations of American authors. Canons by Consensus examines this classroom fixture in detail to challenge and correct a number of assumptions about the development of the literary canon throughout the 20th century.

Joseph Csicsila analyzes more than 80 anthologies published since 1919 and traces not only the critical fortunes of individual authors, but also the treatment of entire genres and groupings of authors by race, region, gender, and formal approach. In doing so, he calls into question accusations of deliberate or inadvertent sexism and racism. Selections by anthology editors, Csicsila demonstrates, have always been governed far more by prevailing trends in academic criticism than by personal bias.

Academic anthologies are found to constitute a rich and often overlooked resource for studying American literature, as well as an irrefutable record of the academy’s changing literary tastes throughout the last century.


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The Chicago Guide for Freelance Editors
How to Take Care of Your Business, Your Clients, and Yourself from Start-Up to Sustainability
Erin Brenner
University of Chicago Press, 2024
The definitive guide to starting and running a freelance editing business.

You’ve been thinking about shifting into the world of freelance editing, but you don’t know where to start. In a time when editors are seeking greater flexibility in their work arrangements and schedules, freelancing is an increasingly common career option. But deciding to go it alone means balancing the risks with the rewards. From the publisher of The Chicago Manual of Style comes The Chicago Guide for Freelance Editors, the definitive guide to running your business and finding greater control and freedom in your work life.

In this book, Erin Brenner—an industry leader and expert on the business of editorial freelancing—gathers everything you need to know into a single resource. Brenner has run her own successful editing business for over two decades and has helped hundreds of editors launch or improve their businesses through her teaching, blog writing, and coaching.

The Chicago Guide for Freelance Editors will walk you through the entire process of conceiving, launching, and working in a freelance editing business, from deciding on services and rates to choosing the best business structure to thinking through branding and marketing strategies and beyond. This book is ideal for beginning freelancers looking to get set up and land their first clients, but it’s equally valuable to those who have already been freelancing, with detailed coverage of such issues as handling difficult clients and continuing professional development. You’ll find a collection of advice from other successful freelance editors in this guide, as well as an extensive list of resources and tools. In the final and perhaps most important chapter, Brenner teaches you how to care for the key component of the business: yourself.

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The Chicago Guide to Copyediting Fiction
Amy J. Schneider
University of Chicago Press, 2023
A book-world veteran offers the first copyediting guide focused exclusively on fiction.
Although The Chicago Manual of Style is widely used by writers and editors of all stripes, it is primarily concerned with nonfiction, a fact long lamented by the fiction community. In this long-awaited book from the publisher of the Manual, Amy J. Schneider, a veteran copyeditor who’s worked on bestsellers across a wide swath of genres, delivers a companionable editing guide geared specifically toward fiction copyeditors—the first book of its type.
In a series of approachable thematic chapters, Schneider offers cogent advice on how to deal with dialogue, voice, grammar, conscious language, and other significant issues in fiction. She focuses on the copyediting tasks specific to fiction—such as tracking the details of fictional characters, places, and events to ensure continuity across the work—and provides a slew of sharp, practicable solutions drawn from her twenty-five years of experience working for publishers both large and small. The Chicago Guide to Copyediting Fiction is sure to prove an indispensable companion to The Chicago Manual of Style and a versatile tool for copyeditors working in the multifaceted landscape of contemporary fiction.

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Choosing Not Choosing
Sharon Cameron
University of Chicago Press, 1993
Although Emily Dickinson copied and bound her poems into manuscript notebooks, in the century since her death her poems have been read as single lyrics with little or no regard for the context she created for them in her fascicles. Choosing Not Choosing is the first book-length consideration of the poems in their manuscript context. Sharon Cameron demonstrates that to read the poems with attention to their placement in the fascicles is to observe scenes and subjects unfolding between and among poems rather than to think of them as isolated riddles, enigmatic in both syntax and reference. Thus Choosing Not Choosing illustrates that the contextual sense of Dickinson is not the canonical sense of Dickinson.

Considering the poems in the context of the fascicles, Cameron argues that an essential refusal of choice pervades all aspects of Dickinson's poetry. Because Dickinson never chose whether she wanted her poems read as single lyrics or in sequence (nor is it clear where any fascicle text ends, or even how, in context, a poem is bounded), "not choosing" is a textual issue; it is also a formal issue because Dickinson refused to chose among poetic variants; it is a thematic issue; and, finally, it is a philosophical one, since what is produced by "not choosing" is a radical indifference to difference. Extending the readings of Dickinson offered in her earlier book Lyric Time, Cameron continues to enlarge our understanding of the work of this singular American poet.

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Contemporary German Editorial Theory
Hans Walter Gabler, George Bornstein, and Gillian Borland Pierce, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 1995
Over the past decade, Anglo-American notions of textual construction and editorial theory have begun major paradigm shifts. Many of the key emergent issues of Anglo-American debate--such as theories of versions--are already familiar in German theory. In other respects, including systematic reflection on the design and function of editorial apparatus, the German debate has already produced paradigms and procedures as yet unformulated in English.
Contemporary German Editorial Theory makes available for the first time in English ten major essays by seven German theorists, together with an original introductory meditation by Hans Walter Gabler, editor of the celebrated edition of James Joyce's Ulysses. The volume thus participates in the paradigm shift in editorial theory that has led both to theoretical reconception of the field and to groundbreaking practical results. Topics discussed include the distinction between historical record and editor's interpretation, the display of multiple versions, concepts of authorization and intention, and the relations of textual theory to approaches like deconstruction and semiotics. The book also includes suggestions for further reading in both languages and a glossary of technical terms.
Contributors are Hans Zeller, Miroslav Cervenka, Elisabeth Höpker-Herberg, Henning Boetius, Siegfried Scheibe, and Gerhard Seidel.
Bringing together the heretofore separate Anglo- American and German approaches will strengthen each separately and prepare the way for a new hybrid combining the advantages of both orientations. This book will interest not only students of Anglo-American or German literature, but all who study cultural construction and transmission.
Hans Walter Gabler is Professor of English Literature, University of Munich. George Bornstein is Professor of English, University of Michigan. Gillian Borland Pierce is a Ph.D. candidate in Comparative Literature, University of Michigan.

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Digital Critical Editions
Edited by Daniel Apollon, Claire Belisle, and Philippe Regnier
University of Illinois Press, 2014

Provocative yet sober, Digital Critical Editions examines how transitioning from print to a digital milieu deeply affects how scholars deal with the work of editing critical texts. On one hand, forces like changing technology and evolving reader expectations lead to the development of specific editorial products, while on the other hand, they threaten traditional forms of knowledge and methods of textual scholarship.

Using the experiences of philologists, text critics, text encoders, scientific editors, and media analysts, Digital Critical Editions ranges from philology in ancient Alexandria to the vision of user-supported online critical editing, from peer-directed texts distributed to a few to community-edited products shaped by the many. The authors discuss the production and accessibility of documents, the emergence of tools used in scholarly work, new editing regimes, and how the readers' expectations evolve as they navigate digital texts. The goal: exploring questions such as, What kind of text is produced? Why is it produced in this particular way?

Digital Critical Editions provides digital editors, researchers, readers, and technological actors with insights for addressing disruptions that arise from the clash of traditional and digital cultures, while also offering a practical roadmap for processing traditional texts and collections with today's state-of-the-art editing and research techniques thus addressing readers' new emerging reading habits.


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The Dissertation-to-Book Workbook
Exercises for Developing and Revising Your Book Manuscript
Katelyn E. Knox and Allison Van Deventer
University of Chicago Press, 2023
Writing an academic book is a daunting task. Where to start? This workbook.

So, you’ve written a dissertation. Congratulations! But how do you turn it into a book? Even if you know what to do when revising your dissertation, do you know how to do those things? This workbook by Katelyn E. Knox and Allison Van Deventer, creators of the successful online Dissertation-to-Book Boot Camp, offers a series of manageable, concrete steps with exercises to help you revise your academic manuscript into publishable book form.
The Dissertation-to-Book Workbook uses targeted exercises and prompts to take the guesswork out of writing a book. You’ll clarify your book’s core priorities, pinpoint your organizing principle, polish your narrative arc, evaluate your evidence, and much more. Using what this workbook calls “book questions and chapter answers,” you’ll figure out how to thread your book’s main ideas through its chapters. Then, you’ll assemble an argument, and finally, you’ll draft any remaining material and revise the manuscript. And most important, by the time you complete the workbook, you’ll have confidence that your book works as a book—that it’s a cohesive, focused manuscript that tells the story you want to tell.
Indispensible to anyone with an academic manuscript in progress, the prompts, examples, checklists, and activities will give you confidence about all aspects of your project—that it is structurally sound, coherent, free of the hallmarks of “dissertationese," and ready for submission to an academic publisher.

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Editing and Advocacy
Patrick Barry
Michigan Publishing Services, 2022
Good editors don’t just see the sentence that was written. They see the sentence that might have been written. They know how to spot words that shouldn’t be included and summon up ones that haven’t yet appeared. Their value comes not just from preventing mistakes but from discovering new ways to improve a piece of writing’s style, structure, and overall impact.
This book— which is based on a popular course taught at the University of Chicago Law School, the University of Michigan Law School, and the UCLA School of Law— is designed to help you become one of those editors. You’ll learn how to edit with empathy. You’ll learn how to edit with statistics. You’ll learn, in short, a wide range of compositional skills you can use to elevate your advocacy and better champion the causes you care about the most.

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Editing and Special/Visual Effects
Keil, Charlie
Rutgers University Press, 2016
Most moviegoers think of editing and special effects as distinct components of the filmmaking process. We might even conceive of them as polar opposites, since effective film editing is often subtle and almost invisible, whereas special effects frequently call attention to themselves. Yet, film editors and visual effects artists have worked hand-in-hand from the dawn of cinema to the present day. 
Editing and Special/Visual Effects brings together a diverse range of film scholars who trace how the arts of editing and effects have evolved in tandem. Collectively, the contributors demonstrate how these two crafts have been integral to cinematic history, starting with the “trick films” of the early silent era, which astounded audiences by splicing in or editing out key frames, all the way up to cutting-edge effects technologies and concealed edits used to create the illusions. Throughout, readers learn about a variety of filmmaking techniques, from classic Hollywood’s rear projection and matte shots to the fast cuts and wall-to-wall CGI of the contemporary blockbuster. 
In addition to providing a rich historical overview, Editing and Special/Visual Effects supplies multiple perspectives on these twinned crafts, introducing readers to the analog and digital tools used in each craft, showing the impact of changes in the film industry, and giving the reader a new appreciation for the processes of artistic collaboration they involve. 

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Editing the Bible
Assessing the Task Past and Present
John S. Kloppenborg
SBL Press, 2012
The Bible is likely the most-edited book in history, yet the task of editing the Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek texts of the Bible is fraught with difficulties. The dearth of Hebrew manuscripts of the Jewish Scriptures and the substantial differences among those witnesses creates difficulties in determining which text ought to be printed as the text of the Jewish Scriptures. For the New Testament, it is not the dearth of manuscripts but the overwhelming number of manuscripts—almost six thousand Greek manuscripts and many more in other languages—that presents challenges for sorting and analyzing such a large, multivariant data set. This volume, representing experts in the editing of the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament, discusses both current achievements and future challenges in creating modern editions of the biblical texts in their original languages. The contributors are Kristin De Troyer, Michael W. Holmes, John S. Kloppenborg, Sarianna Metso, Judith H. Newman, Holger Strutwolf, Eibert Tigchelaar, David Trobisch, Eugene Ulrich, John Van Seters, Klaus Wachtel, and Ryan Wettlaufer.

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The Editor Function
Literary Publishing in Postwar America
Abram Foley
University of Minnesota Press, 2021

Offering the everyday tasks of literary editors as inspired sources of postwar literary history

Michel Foucault famously theorized “the author function” in his 1969 essay “What Is an Author?” proposing that the existence of the author limits textual meaning. Abram Foley shows a similar critique at work in the labor of several postwar editors who sought to question and undo the corporate “editorial/industrial complex.” Marking an end to the powerful trope of the editor as gatekeeper, The Editor Function demonstrates how practices of editing and publishing constitute their own kinds of thought, calling on us to rethink what we read and how.

The Editor Function follows avant-garde American literary editors and the publishing practices they developed to compete against the postwar corporate consolidation of the publishing industry. Foley studies editing and publishing through archival readings and small press and literary journal publishing lists as unique sites for literary inquiry. Pairing histories and analyses of well- and lesser-known figures and publishing formations, from Cid Corman’s Origin and Nathaniel Mackey’s Hambone to Dalkey Archive Press and Semiotext(e), Foley offers the first in-depth engagement with major publishing initiatives in the postwar United States.

The Editor Function proposes that from the seemingly mundane tasks of these editors—routine editorial correspondence, line editing, list formation—emerge visions of new, better worlds and new textual and conceptual spaces for collective action.


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Emily Dickinson's Open Folios
Scenes of Reading, Surfaces of Writing
Marta L. Werner
University of Michigan Press, 1996
Emily Dickinson's Open Folios: Scenes of Reading, Surfaces of Writing is a fine facsimile edition and aesthetic exploration of a group of forty late drafts and fragments hitherto known as the "Lord letters." The drafts are presented in facsimile form on high-quality paper alongside typed transcriptions that reproduce as fully as possible the shock of script and startling array of visual details inscribed on the surfaces of the manuscripts.
Werner argues that a redefinition of the editorial enterprise is needed to approach the revelations of these writings-- the details that have been all but erased by editorial interventions and print conventions in the twentieth century. Paradoxically, "un-editing" them allows an exploration of the relationship between medium and messages. Werner's commentary forsakes the claims to comprehensiveness generally associated with scholarly narrative in favor of a series of speculative and fragmentary "close-ups"--a portrait in pieces. Finally, she proposes the acts of both reading and writing as visual poems.
A crucial reference for Dickinson scholars, this book is also of primary importance to textual scholars, editorial theorists, and students of gender and cultural studies interested in the production, dissemination, and interpretation of works by women writers.
This publication has been supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Marta L. Werner received her Ph.D. from the State University of New York-Buffalo. She is an independent scholar and a member of the Emily Dickinson Editing Collective.

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Emily Dickinson’s Poems
As She Preserved Them
Emily Dickinson
Harvard University Press, 2016

Widely considered the definitive edition of Emily Dickinson’s poems, this landmark collection presents her poems here for the first time “as she preserved them,” and in the order in which she wished them to appear. It is the only edition of Dickinson’s complete poems to distinguish clearly those she took pains to copy carefully onto folded sheets in fair hand—presumably to preserve them for posterity—from the ones she kept in rougher form. It is also unique among complete editions in presenting the alternate words and phrases Dickinson chose to use on the copies of the poems she kept, so that we can peer over her shoulder and see her composing and reworking her own poems.

The world’s foremost scholar of Emily Dickinson, Cristanne Miller, guides us through these stunning poems with her deft and unobtrusive notes, helping us understand the poet’s quotations and allusions, and explaining how she composed, copied, and circulated her poems. Miller’s brilliant reordering of the poems transforms our experience of them.

A true delight, this award-winning collection brings us closer than we have ever been to the writing practice of one of America’s greatest poets. With its clear, uncluttered page and beautiful production values, it is a gift for students of Emily Dickinson and for anyone who loves her poems.


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Evidence of Editing
Growth and Change of Texts in the Hebrew Bible
Reinhard Müller
SBL Press, 2014

A new perspective on editorial activity in the Hebrew Bible for research and teaching

Evidence of Editing lays out the case for substantial and frequent editorial activity within the Hebrew Bible. The authors show how editors omitted, expanded, rewrote, and compiled both smaller and larger phrases and passages to address religious and political change. The book refines the exegetical method of literary and redaction criticism, and its results have important consequences for the future use of the Hebrew Bible in historical and theological studies.


  • Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic examples of editorial activity
  • Clear explanations of the distinctions between textual, literary, and redaction criticism
  • Fifteen chapters attesting to continual editorial activity in the Torah, the Prophets, and the Writings

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The Fluid Text
A Theory of Revision and Editing for Book and Screen
John Bryant
University of Michigan Press, 2002
Theorists, scholars, and critics usually consider literary works to be fixed objects, assuming that any variations in the text of a work should be stabilized, reduced, eliminated. John Bryant urges that these variations create valuable records of the interactions between the artist and society. Preprint revisions, revised editions, adaptations for film, and expurgations for children are among the many forms of flux that shape literary works and position them relative to their audiences. Fully understanding the life of a literary work in its cultural situation requires recognizing the fluidity of text, and the present work makes the first coherent theoretical, critical, and editorial approach to the study of revision.
The author develops his theory and its critical application drawing upon the example of Melville's Typee, using its various versions to present protocols for fluid text analysis. He shows how the mountain of scholarly material comprising the fluid text can be presented by a partnership of book and computer screen, in ways that offer new opportunities, insights,and pleasures for scholars and readers.
The Fluid Text: A Theory of Revision and Editing for Book and Screen is written in a clear and accessible style and will appeal to scholars and students in editorial theory, literary criticism and analysis, and anyone concerned with the information architecture of complex literary works in digital media.
John Bryant is Professor of English, Hofstra University. His most recent book is an edition of Melville's Tales, Poems, and Other Writings.

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From Dissertation to Book
William Germano
University of Chicago Press, 2005
All new Phd's hope that their dissertations can become books. But a dissertation is written for a committee and a book for the larger world. William Germano's From Dissertation to Book is the essential guide for academic writers who want to revise a doctoral thesis for publication. The author of Getting It Published, Germano draws upon his extensive experience in academic publishing to provide writers with a state-of-the-art view of how to turn a dissertation into a manuscript that publishers will notice.

Acknowledging first that not all theses can become books, Germano shows how some dissertations might have a better life as one or more journal articles or as chapters in a newly conceived book. But even dissertations strong enough to be published as books first need to become book manuscripts, and at the heart of From Dissertation to Book is the idea that revising the dissertation is a fundamental process of adapting from one genre of writing to another.

Germano offers clear guidance on how to do just this. Writers will find advice on such topics as rethinking the table of contents, taming runaway footnotes, shaping chapter length, and confronting the limitations of jargon, alongside helpful timetables for light or heavy revision. With crisp directives, engaging examples, and a sympathetic eye for the foibles of academic writing, From Dissertation to Book reveals to recent PhD's the process of careful and thoughtful revision—a truly invaluable skill as they grow into their new roles as professional writers.

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From Dissertation to Book, Second Edition
William Germano
University of Chicago Press, 2013
When a dissertation crosses my desk, I usually want to grab it by its metaphorical lapels and give it a good shake. “You know something!” I would say if it could hear me. “Now tell it to us in language we can understand!”

Since its publication in 2005, From Dissertation to Book has helped thousands of young academic authors get their books beyond the thesis committee and into the hands of interested publishers and general readers. Now revised and updated to reflect the evolution of scholarly publishing, this edition includes a new chapter arguing that the future of academic writing is in the hands of young scholars who must create work that meets the broader expectations of readers rather than the narrow requirements of academic committees.

At the heart of From Dissertation to Book is the idea that revising the dissertation is fundamentally a process of shifting its focus from the concerns of a narrow audience—a committee or advisors—to those of a broader scholarly audience that wants writing to be both informative and engaging. William Germano offers clear guidance on how to do this, with advice on such topics as rethinking the table of contents, taming runaway footnotes, shaping chapter length, and confronting the limitations of jargon, alongside helpful timetables for light or heavy revision.

Germano draws on his years of experience in both academia and publishing to show writers how to turn a dissertation into a book that an audience will actually enjoy, whether reading on a page or a screen. Germano also acknowledges that not all dissertations can or even should become books and explores other, often overlooked, options, such as turning them into journal articles or chapters in an edited work.

With clear directions, engaging examples, and an eye for the idiosyncrasies of academic writing, From Dissertation to Book reveals to recent PhDs the secrets of careful and thoughtful revision—a skill that will be truly invaluable as they add “author” to their curriculum vitae.

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Getting into Print
The Decision-Making Process in Scholarly Publishing
Walter W. Powell
University of Chicago Press, 1985
Based on extensive fieldwork at two well-known commercial publishers of scholarly books, Walter W. Powell details the different ways in which both internal politics and external networks influence decisions about what should be published. Powell focuses on the work of acquisitions editors: how they decide which few manuscripts, out of hundreds, to sponsor for publication; how editorial autonomy is shaped, but never fully curbed, by unobtrusive controls; and how the search process fits into the social structure of the American academy. Powell's observations—and the many candid remarks of publishers and their staffs—recreate the workaday world of publishing.

Throughout, the sociology of organizations and of culture serves as Powell's interpretive framework. Powell shows how scholarly publishers help define what is "good" social science research and how the history and tradition of a publishing house contribute to the development of an organizational identity. Powell's review of actual correspondence, from outside letters proposing projects to internal "kill" letters of rejection, suggests that editors and authors at times form their own quasi-organization with external allegiances and bonds beyond those of the publishing house.

"This is a welcome addition to the literature on the life of the organizations that produce our science and our culture. Powell's intimate look at two scholarly publishing companies has an insider's appreciation of the book business and an outsider's eye for questions the editors are not asking themselves."—Michael Schudson, University of California at San Diego

"Getting Into Print will long be the book about how academic editors choose the titles they sponsor. Even experienced editors and authors will find new insights here and revealing comparisons with decision-making in other kinds of organizations."—Edward Tenner, Los Angeles Times Book Review

"Getting Into Print is an unusually outstanding ethnographic study in that it reflects the evocative richness of detail associated with the ethnographic approach while simultaneously maintaining a clear-headed, analytical distance from the subject that allows for a meaningful theoretical contribution. Powell is an astute ethnographer who presents a vital and compelling 'insider's view' of the decision-making process in scholarly publishing, making this book fascinating reading for all those involved in the 'publish-or-perish' syndrome."—Barbara Levitt, American Journal of Sociology

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Good with Words
Writing and Editing
Patrick Barry
Michigan Publishing Services, 2019
If your success at work or in school depends on your ability to communicate persuasively in writing, you’ll want to get Good with Words. Based on a course that law students at the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago have called "outstanding," "A-M-A-Z-I-N-G," and "the best course I have ever taken," the book brings together a collection of concepts, exercises, and examples that have also helped improve the advocacy skills of people pursuing careers in many other fields—from marketing, to management, to medicine.

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Good with Words
Writing and Editing
Patrick Barry
Michigan Publishing Services, 2019
If your success at work or in school depends on your ability to communicate persuasively in writing, you’ll want to get Good with Words. Based on a course that law students at the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago have called "outstanding," "A-M-A-Z-I-N-G," and "the best course I have ever taken," the book brings together a collection of concepts, exercises, and examples that have also helped improve the advocacy skills of people pursuing careers in many other fields—from marketing, to management, to medicine.

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A Guide to Editing Middle English
Vincent McCarren and Douglas Moffat, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 1998
Those who undertake a scholarly edition of a Middle English text have until now had no general guide for their work. All who study English literary works must rely on editions at some stage, and this volume will provide them with many perspectives on the formation of these necessary scholarly tools. Editors of texts in other medieval languages and indeed all those engaged with questions of scholarly editing--whether practical, historical, or theoretical--will also find important contributions in this volume.
A Guide to Editing Middle English collects nineteen essays and three appendices written by leading text editors in Middle English. A number of essays deal primarily with theoretical questions, while others offer assessments of historical developments in editing, especially in regard to the most well-known Middle English works. Most of the essays deal with practical matters: how to use a computer in preparing and presenting an edition; how to form and arrange the standard parts of an edition; and how to handle problems presented by texts in areas such as science, astrology, and cooking. The three appendices provide bibliographical references to dictionaries, facsimiles, and manuscript description.
Contributors, in addition to the editors, are Peter Baker, Richard Beadle, Norman Blake, Helen Cooper, A. S. G. Edwards, Jennifer Fellows, David C. Greetham, Mary Hamel, Constance Heiatt, Nicholas Jacobs, Geroge Keiser, Peter J. Lucas, Maldwyn Mills, Linne Mooney, and Peter Robinson.
The many and varied perspectives of this volume will make it of interest to readers of Middle English texts, those involved in textual scholarship, and those interested in editing in general. It occupies a unique place in the field of Middle English studies and will likely remain a standard reference tool for a long time.
Vincent McCarren is a Research Associate with the Middle English Dictionary at the University of Michigan. Douglas Moffat, formerly with the Middle English Dictionary, is a Development Officer with the University of Michigan.

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The Iconic Page in Manuscript, Print, and Digital Culture
George Bornstein and Theresa Tinkle, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 1998
Most readers think of a written work as producing its meaning through the words it contains. But what is the significance of the detailed and beautiful illuminations on a medieval manuscript? Of the deliberately chosen typefaces in a book of poems by Yeats? Of the design and layout of text in an electronic format? How does the material form of a work shape its understanding in a particular historical moment, in a particular culture?
The material features of texts as physical artifacts--their "bibliographic codes" --have over the last decade excited increasing interest in a variety of disciplines. The Iconic Page in Manuscript, Print, and Digital Culture gathers essays by an extraordinarily distinguished group of scholars to offer the most comprehensive examination of these issues yet, drawing on examples from literature, history, the fine arts, and philosophy.
Fittingly, the volume contains over two dozen illustrations that display the iconic features of the works analyzed--from Alfred the Great's Boethius through medieval manuscripts to the philosophy of C. S. Peirce and the dustjackets on works by F. Scott Fitzgerald and William Styron.
The Iconic Page in Manuscript, Print, and Digital Culture will be groundbreaking reading for scholars in a wide range of fields.
George Bornstein is C. A. Patrides Professor of English, University of Michigan. Theresa Tinkle is Associate Professor of English, University of Michigan.

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The Margins of the Text
D. C. Greetham, Editor
University of Michigan Press, 1997
These days, the margins have become a powerful position from which to mount a critique of contemporary society, culture, and text. From gay and lesbian studies to postcolonial or "subaltern" criticism, formerly marginalized perspectives have brought provocative new insights into many fields of inquiry. But until comparatively recently, the extremely powerful, even culture-defining, discourse of textual editing has been immune to such influences.
The Margins of the Text is the first attempt to collect a body of essays concerned with specific aspects of the marginal as they relate to text. The volume is divided into two sections. The first part assembles essays concerned with the margins of textual discourse and explores the function of discourses not previously recognized as significant to scholarly editing, such as those of class, race, gender, and sexual orientation. The second section attends to the textual margins in the bibliographical sense--the margins of the book, in which there has been so much recent interest. The two parts of the collection are clearly interrelated, since both study the effects of margins as a form of cultural discourse.
As a whole, the collection spans several periods (medieval, Renaissance, eighteenth-century to modern), several disciplines (drama, literature, art history, politics, and philosophy), and offers a wide-ranging consideration of a single topic as it is manifested in various genres, formats, and media. The contributors are among the most respected textual/critical theorists in their fields.
The Margins of the Text will become a standard reference in the field, and will be read profitably by culture critics and social historians as well as textual critics and editors.
D. C. Greetham is Professor of English and Medieval Studies, City University of New York Graduate School.

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Measures of Possibility
Emily Dickinson's Manuscripts
Domhnall Mitchell
University of Massachusetts Press, 2005
Debates about editorial proprieties have been at the center of Emily Dickinson scholarship since the 1981 publication of the two-volume Manuscript Books of Emily Dickinson, edited by Ralph W. Franklin. Many critics have since investigated the possibility that autograph poems might have primacy over their printed versions, and it has been suggested that to read Dickinson in any standard typographic edition is effectively to read her in translation, at one remove from her actual practices. More specifically, it has been claimed that line arrangements, the shape of words and letters, and the particular angle of dashes are all potentially integral to any given poem's meaning, making a graphic contribution to its contents.

In Measures of Possibility, Domhnall Mitchell sets out to test the hypothesis of Dickinson's textual radicalism, and its consequences for readers, students, and teachers, by looking closely at features such as spacing, the physical direction of the writing, and letter-shapes in handwritten lyric and epistolary texts. Through systematic contextualization and cross-referencing, Mitchell provides the reader with a critical apparatus by which to measure the extent to which contemporary approaches to Dickinson's autograph procedures can reasonably be formulated as corresponding to the poet's own purposes.

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On Revision
The Only Writing That Counts
William Germano
University of Chicago Press, 2021
A trusted editor turns his attention to the most important part of writing: revision.

So you’ve just finished writing something? Congratulations! Now revise it. Because revision is about getting from good to better, and it’s only finished when you decide to stop. But where to begin? In On Revision, William Germano shows authors how to take on the most critical stage of writing anything: rewriting it.

For more than twenty years, thousands of writers have turned to Germano for his insider’s take on navigating the world of publishing. A professor, author, and veteran of the book industry, Germano knows what editors want and what writers need to know: Revising is not just correcting typos. Revising is about listening and seeing again. Revising is a rethinking of the principles from the ground up to understand why the writer is doing something, why they’re going somewhere, and why they’re taking the reader along with them.

On Revision steps back to take in the big picture, showing authors how to hear their own writing voice and how to reread their work as if they didn’t write it. On Revision will show you how to know when your writing is actually done—and, until it is, what you need to do to get it there.

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Editorial Theory in the Humanities
George Bornstein and Ralph G. Williams, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 1993
Distinguished scholars discuss editorial theory and how it is applied across the humanities

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A Piece Of Work
Five Writers Discuss Their Revisions
Jay Woodruff
University of Iowa Press, 1993

Books on writing generally offer prescriptions and proscriptions about this "craft so hard to learn" instead of evidence. But in A Piece of Work Woodruff's incisive questions guide five writers—Tobias Wolff, Tess Gallagher, Robert Coles, Joyce Carol Oates, and Donald Hall—through specific examples that enable the reader to see how good writing becomes better. From the first draft through various revisions and finally to the printed version of a single piece of each author's work, Woodruff traces the full course of the revision process.


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Proofs of Genius
Collected Editions from the American Revolution to the Digital Age
Amanda Gailey
University of Michigan Press, 2015
Proofs of Genius: Collected Editions from the American Revolution to the Digital Age is the first extensive study of the collected edition as an editorial genre within American literary history. Unlike editions of an author’s “selected works” or thematic anthologies, which clearly indicate the presence of non-authorial editorial intervention, collected editions have typically been arranged to imply an unmediated documentary completeness. By design, the collected edition obscures its own role in shaping the cultural reception of the author.

In Proofs of Genius, Amanda Gailey argues that decisions to re-edit major authorial corpora are acts of canon-formation in miniature that indicate more foundational shifts in the way a culture views its literature and itself. By combining a theoretically-informed approach with a broad historical view of collected editions from the late eighteenth century to the present (including the rise of digital editions), Gailey fills a gap in the textual scholarship of the editing history of major figures like Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman and of the American literary canon itself.

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Reading the Fascicles of Emily Dickinson
Dwelling in Possibilities
The Ohio State University Press, 2020
Heginbotham’s book focuses on Emily Dickinson’s work as a deliberate writer and editor. The fascicles were forty small portfolios of her poems written between 1856 and 1864, composed on four to seven stationery sheets, folded, stacked, and sewn together with twine. What revelations might come from reading her poems in her own context? Are they simply “scrapbooks,” as some claim, or are they evidence of conscious, canny editing? Read in their original places, each lyric becomes different—and more interesting—than when read in isolation.

We cannot know why Dickinson compiled the books or what she thought of them, but we can observe what she left in them. What she left is visible only by noting the way the poem answers in a dialogue across the pages, the way lines spilling onto a second page introduce the next poem, the way openings suggest image clusters so that each book has its own network of concerns and language—not a story or philosophical preachment but an aesthetic wholeness.

This book is the first to demonstrate that Dickinson’s poetic and philosophical creativity is most startling when the reader observes the individual lyric in the poet’s own, and only, context for them. For teacher, student, scholar, and poetry lover, Heginbotham creates an important new framework for understanding one of the most complex, clever, and profound U.S. poets.

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Representing Modernist Texts
Editing as Interpretation
George Bornstein, Editor
University of Michigan Press, 1991
Representing Modernist Texts seeks to expose, and then to bridge, the gap between contemporary textual scholarship and the critical and theoretical study of modernist texts. Modernist critics and scholars have for too long consigned textual problems to work from earlier periods and largely ignored them in creating successive waves of avantgarde critical theory designed first to champion, and more recently to challenge, modernist literature itself. And yet, as the controversy around Hans Walter Gabler’s edition of Ulysses has made clear, twentieth-century texts are deeply problematic at the physical as well as the interpretive level.
In Representing Modernist Texts, thirteen internationally known scholars provide major explorations of the topic in the work of particular writers. The issues they raise include the construction of a writer’s canon and the effect of newly available “uncanonical” manuscript materials on existing works and orderings; the replacement of the older idea of a fixed, stable text by a more contemporary notion of the text as process; and the interrogation by advanced textual theory of many of the same notions of “author,” “intention,” and “stability of the text” questioned by advanced literary theory.

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Resisting Texts
Authority and Submission in Constructions of Meaning
Peter L. Shillingsburg
University of Michigan Press, 1998
"It is with no desire or hope to promote a correct or superior form of textuality, with no desire to correct a so-called interpretive or editorial textual abuse, nor any attempt to prevent anyone from doing anything imaginable with texts or books that I have undertaken this book. . . ." So writes Peter Shillingsburg in his introduction to this series of meditations on the possibilities of deriving "meaning" from the texts we read.
Shillingsburg argues that as humans we are and always will be interested in the past, in what was meant, in what was revealed inadvertently by a text--and that is all to the good. But we learn more and can compare notes better when we understand the principles that govern the ways we read. Resisting Texts approaches crucial questions about the practice of textual editing and literary criticism by posing questions in the form "If we take such and such to be the goal of our reading, then what will follow from that assumption?"
With humor and a lively imagination, Shillingsburg takes the reader on a fresh theoretical investigation of communication, understanding and misunderstanding, and textual satisfactions, drawing examples from Thackeray, Wordsworth, Melville, and others.
Resisting Texts will appeal to all who enjoy the varieties of critical approaches to the written word.
Peter L. Shillingsburg is Professor of English, University of North Texas.

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Revising Moves
Writing Stories of (Re)Making
Christina LaVecchia
Utah State University Press, 2024
Revision sometimes seems more metaphor than real, having been variously described as a stage, an act of goal setting, a method of correction, a process of discovery, a form of resistance. Revising Moves makes a significant contribution to writing theory by collecting stories of revision that honor revision’s vitality and immerse readers in rooms, life circumstances, and scenes where revision comes to life.
In these narrative-driven essays written by a wide range of writing professionals, Revising Moves describes revision as a messy, generative, and often collaborative act. These meditations reveal how revision is both a micro practice tracked by textual change and a macro phenomenon rooted in family life, institutional culture, identity commitments, and political and social upheaval. Contributors depict revision as a holistic undertaking and a radically contextualized, distributed practice that showcases its relationality to everything else. Authors share their revision processes when creating scholarly works, institutional and self-promoting documents, and creative projects. Through narrative the volume opens a window to what is often unseen in a finished text: months or years of work, life events that disrupt or alter writing plans, multiple draft changes, questions about writerly identity and positionality, layers of (sometimes contradictory) feedback, and much more.

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Revising Shakespeare
Grace Ioppolo
Harvard University Press, 1991

Every line of Shakespeare has been commented upon, revised, or deleted and reinstated many times over. His greatest contemporary, Ben Jonson, remarked that Shakespeare should have “blotted a thousand” lines himself; his greatest editor, Samuel Johnson, surveying the inability of previous editors to refrain from improving what they could not understand, attempted to restore Shakespeare's works “to their integrity.”

In Revising Shakespeare Grace Ioppolo addresses the question of Shakespeare's “integrity.” Through patient analysis of variant texts spanning the history of the plays, she arrives at a fresh interpretation of Shakespeare as author and reviser. Ioppolo starts where all of us—critics, teachers, textual scholars, and general readers—must start, with the physical text. As recent textual studies of King Lear have shown, the text of Shakespeare is not a given. The “text” is nearly always a revision of another text. Critics can no longer evaluate plots, structure, and themes, nor can scholars debate what constitutes (or how to establish) a copy-text that stands as the “most authoritative” version of a Shakespeare play, without reconsidering the implications of revision for traditional and modern interpretations.

Ioppolo examines the evidence provided by dramatic manuscripts and early printed texts of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Gradually we see how a recognition of the diverse facts regarding authorial revision leads to basic changes in how we study, edit, and teach Shakespeare. Ioppolo places the textual revolution in a broad historical, theatrical, textual, and literary context, presenting textual studies that show Shakespeare and other Elizabethan and Jacobean dramatists at work revising themselves, their plays, and their audiences. She concludes that both textual and literary critics must now reevaluate and redefine the idea of the “text” as well as that of the “author”; the “text” is no longer editorially or theoretically composite or finite, but multiple and ever-revising. Perhaps most important, Ioppolo produces a new conception of Shakespeare as a creator and recreator, viewer and reviewer, writer and rewriter of his dramatic world.


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The Ohio State University Press, 1999

This collection of original essays examines how the idea of an authentic Chaucerian text was reimagined and reproduced by medieval and early modern scribes and editors to satisfy and shape the cultural expectations of their audiences. These “reproductions” of Chaucer’s works epitomize the tension between developing notions of what makes a text “authentic” and the cultural pressures that led scribes and editors to construct their own versions of Chaucer and his works.

The book begins by exploring medieval and early modern notions of origins and how they at once illuminate and problematize the recovery of Chaucerian texts. Essays in the second section examine how individual scribes and reading communities reshaped Chaucer’s texts. Finally, we see how the printing press—bringing with it a renewed concern about the idea of authenticity—led both to an increase in the number of works attributed to Chaucer and to increasing anxiety about their authenticity.

The focus on the ways in which Chaucer was rewritten in different cultural and aesthetic contexts will enable medieval and early modern critics to situate Chaucer more fully within his cultural milieu, while illuminating the ways in which his reputation as both a “laureate poet” and a “lewed compilator” affected rewritings of his works. Rewriting Chaucer, then, will appeal both to scholars interested in the critical juncture between manuscript and print culture and to those interested in how culture affects the reproduction of authoritative texts.


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The Syntax of Sports Class 6
Drafting and Editing
Patrick Barry
Michigan Publishing Services, 2024

How do you start a piece of writing? How do you edit one? And what can be done to combat those pesky—and paralyzing—feelings of perfectionism that often derail our most important sentences and paragraphs?

This sixth volume of the Syntax of Sports series creatively uses the language of baseball, football, tennis, and many other sports to explore these questions. Based on a popular course at the University of Michigan, it captures the energy, originality, and discipline - crossing insights that make its author, Professor Patrick Barry, such a sought-after teacher and presenter.


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What Editors Do
The Art, Craft, and Business of Book Editing
Edited by Peter Ginna
University of Chicago Press, 2017
Editing is an invisible art where the very best work goes undetected. Editors strive to create books that are enlightening, seamless, and pleasurable to read, all while giving credit to the author. This makes it all the more difficult to truly understand the range of roles they inhabit while shepherding a project from concept to publication.

In What Editors Do, Peter Ginna gathers essays from twenty-seven leading figures in book publishing about their work. Representing both large houses and small, and encompassing trade, textbook, academic, and children’s publishing, the contributors make the case for why editing remains a vital function to writers—and readers—everywhere.

Ironically for an industry built on words, there has been a scarcity of written guidance on how to actually approach the work of editing. This book will serve as a compendium of professional advice and will be a resource both for those entering the profession (or already in it) and for those outside publishing who seek an understanding of it. It sheds light on how editors acquire books, what constitutes a strong author-editor relationship, and the editor’s vital role at each stage of the publishing process—a role that extends far beyond marking up the author’s text.

This collection treats editing as both art and craft, and also as a career. It explores how editors balance passion against the economic realities of publishing. What Editors Do shows why, in the face of a rapidly changing publishing landscape, editors are more important than ever.

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Who is Buried in Chaucer's Tomb?
Studies in the Reception of Chaucer's Book
Joseph A. Dane
Michigan State University Press, 1998
Joseph A. Dane examines the history of the books we now know as "Chaucer’s"—a history that includes printers and publishers, editors, antiquarians, librarians, and book collectors. The Chaucer at issue here is not a medieval poet, securely bound within his fourteenth-century context, but rather the product of the often chaotic history of the physical books that have been produced and marketed in his name.
     This history involves a series of myths about Chaucer—a reformist Chaucer, a realist Chaucer, a political and critical Chaucer who seems oddly like us. It also involves more self-reflective critical myths—the conveniently coherent editorial tradition that leads progressively to modern editions of Chaucer. Dane argues that the material background of these myths remains irreducibly and often amusingly recalcitrant. The great Chaucer monuments—his editions, his book, and even his tomb—defy our efforts to stabilize them with our critical descriptions and transcriptions.
     Part I concentrates on the production and reception of the Chaucerian book from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries, a period dominated by the folio "Complete Works" and a period that culminates in what Chaucerians have consistently (if uncritically) defined as the worst Chaucer edition of 1721. Part II considers the increasing ambivalence of modern editors and critics in relation to the book of Chaucer, and the various attempts of modern scholars to provide alternative sources of authority. 

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The Whole Book
Cultural Perspectives on the Medieval Miscellany
Stephen G. Nichols and Siegfried Wenzel, Editors
University of Michigan Press, 1996
In the last few decades it has become abundantly clear how important is the "archaeology of the manuscript-book" in literary and textual scholarship. This method offers essential contexts for an editor's understanding of a manuscript, and helps to set the manuscript in the historical matrix in which the work was first brought out and understood.
This group of papers, edited by two well-known scholars of the medieval world, offers both general and particular approaches to the issues surrounding manuscripts produced in the medieval habit of "miscellany," works of seemingly diverse natures bound together into one volume. Julia Boffey investigates how certain poetical miscellanies came to be assembled, for example, while Sylvia Huot suggests that the miscellany had many different sorts of function and significance. Siegfried Wenzel considers a taxonomy of such collections, and A. S. G. Edwards' paper considers Bodleian Selden B.24 as an example of how the notions of canon, authorship, and attribution might come into play. Ann Matter's final chapter offers the notion that what we call "miscellanies" are likely to have an internal logic that we have been trained to miss, but can come to understand. Other contributors are Ralph Hanna III, Georg Knauer, Stephen Nichols, James J. O'Donnell, and Barbara A. Shailor.
Because The Whole Book deals not only with the content of miscellanies but also with contemporary literary principles, this volume will be of interest to a wide circle of literary critics and historians, as well as to students of the survival of literature and of cultural values.
Stephen G. Nichols is James M. Beall Professor of French and Chair of the Department of French, The Johns Hopkins University. Siegfried Wenzel is Professor of English, University of Pennsylvania.

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The Work of Revision
Hannah Sullivan
Harvard University Press, 2013

Revision might seem to be an intrinsic part of good writing. But Hannah Sullivan argues that we inherit our faith in the virtues of redrafting from early-twentieth-century modernism. Closely examining changes made in manuscripts, typescripts, and proofs by T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Ernest Hemingway, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, and others, she shows how modernist approaches to rewriting shaped literary style, and how the impulse to touch up, alter, and correct can sometimes go too far.

In the nineteenth century, revision was thought to mar a composition’s originality—a prejudice cultivated especially by the Romantics, who believed writing should be spontaneous and organic, and that rewriting indicated a failure of inspiration. Rejecting such views, avant-garde writers of the twentieth century devoted themselves to laborious acts of rewriting, both before and after publishing their work. The great pains undertaken in revision became a badge of honor for writers anxious to justify the value and difficulty of their work. In turn, many of the distinctive effects of modernist style—ellipsis, fragmentation, parataxis—were produced by zealous, experimental acts of excision and addition.

The early twentieth century also saw the advent of the typewriter. It proved the ideal tool for extensive, multi-stage revisions—superior even to the word processor in fostering self-scrutiny and rereading across multiple drafts. Tracing how master stylists from Henry James to Allen Ginsberg have approached their craft, The Work of Revision reveals how techniques developed in the service of avant-garde experiment have become compositional orthodoxy.


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