[Humanist] 27.698 A Cabinet of Curiosity: The Library's Dead Time

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Sun Jan 12 10:56:24 CET 2014

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 27, No. 698.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Sat, 11 Jan 2014 09:15:58 +0000
        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
        Subject: A Cabinet of Curiosity: The Library's Dead Time

This is for those of us who take particular interest in the processes 
and materialities of research.

"A Cabinet of Curiosity: The Library's Dead Time", an exhibition at the 
University of Illinois, is "an attempt to create an alternative archive 
of librarianship and the library... [and] an aesthetic embodiment of 
scholarship" framed by the metaphor of the late Renaissance 
Wunderkammer, or cabinet of wonders, for which since the very late 20th 
Century we seem to have regained prodigious sympathy -- simultaneously 
with the onset of the Web. See, for example, 
http://www.libraryasincubatorproject.org/?p=4052 and the curators Bonnie 
Mak and Julia Pollack's "The Performance and Practice of Research in The 
Library's Dead Time", Art Documentation: Journal of the Art Libraries 
Society of North America 32.2 (Autumn 2013): 202-21 (in JSTOR).

For the background see Lorraine Daston, "All Curls and Pearls", rev of 
Neil Kenny, The Uses of Curiosity in Early Modern France and Germany, 
London Review of Books 27.2 (23 June 2005): 37-8; and her earlier book 
with Katherine Park, Wonders and the Order of Nature (1998).

Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/), Professor, Department of Digital
Humanities, King's College London, and Research Group in Digital
Humanities, University of Western Sydney

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