Editors sought for SHARP’s open access journal, Lingua Franca

Founded in 1991, the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading and Publishing (SHARP) is the leading international organization for the study of the history of the book, broadly defined. It has around 1000 members from a wide range of disciplinary and institutional backgrounds, including academics and independent scholars, librarians and archivists, publishers and booksellers, and holds regular conferences across the world. In addition, it runs a vibrant email discussion list (SHARP-L), a recently re-launched open access newsletter SHARP News, the journal Book History, and Lingua Franca, the journal of book history in translation.

The Executive Council of SHARP is seeking a new editorial team for Lingua Franca. Lingua Franca is a unique project fully funded by SHARP. Lingua Franca’s mission is to make book history research from a wide range of languages other than English available and thus promote transnational discussions and interdisciplinary debates. 

Applicants should have expertise in the interdisciplinary field of the history of the book, broadly defined, and share SHARP’s commitment to expanding its diversity and international character. The Society is keen to solicit applications from both senior and junior scholars. Experience of editing in English is essential, experience of online content management is desirable. In the interest of expanding the linguistic diversity of Lingua Franca, proficiency in at least one language other than English is required. The applicant should become a SHARP member in good standing. 

The editorial team is expected to publish one issue a year and to provide an annual report to the SHARP Executive Council via the Director of Publications.

Application procedure

Applications will be assessed by an Appointments committee, chaired by Corinna Norrick-Rühl (Muenster, Germany), SHARP’s Director of Publications, and which includes two members of the Society’s Board of Directors: Matthew Kirschenbaum (College Park, Maryland, USA) and Ruth Panofsky (Toronto, Canada); SHARP Director of Transnational Affairs Jan Hillgärtner (Leiden, The Netherlands), SHARP Vice-President Will Slauter (Paris, France), and two representatives from the general membership: Benito Rial Costas (Madrid, Spain) and Cynthia Brokaw (Providence, RI, USA).

Applications should consist of a cover letter, a curriculum vitae as well as two named references, to be sent by email to Corinna Norrick-Rühl (publications@sharpweb.org) to arrive no later than 5pm (Central European Time) on February 15, 2021. 

Informal queries should be directed to Corinna Norrick-Rühl. Applicants will be notified of the committee’s decision in the spring.

Recording of BYOB Launch Party, vol. 2 Now Available

The SHARP BYOB book launch party, vol. 2, took place on November 19, 2020. The first event of this kind was hosted by Corinna Norrick-Rühl as part of #SHARPinFocus in June 2020, but the timing was not ideal for members in Asia and Australasia. So volume 2 was timed to include members from Australasia and Asia – which meant that members in Europe were up bright and early to toast each other’s publications over coffee and tea. Provided there is enough interest, we can plan a SHARP BYOB launch party in the spring, and we will definitely be running one at the SHARP conference 2021. Thanks to all the presenters and everyone who joined us!

The bibliographical information will soon be uploaded to the SHARP News members’ publications page: https://www.sharpweb.org/sharpnews/members-publications-2019-2020/

A recording of the event can be found here: https://youtu.be/dpsiN10Yshg

SHARP BYOB Launch Party, Vol. 2

As promised, we will be running a second iteration of the SHARP BYOB launch party in the coming weeks! For those of you who were not able to attend during #SHARPinFocus week, here is a brief description of the idea: In succinct, 1-2 minute launch slots, authors showcase publications from our field of research that have been published since the last physical SHARP conference, i.e. between August 2019 and October/November 2020. All of the books will be listed on SHARP News on the “New publications by members” page. All are welcome to help us celebrate these new publications!

Since the first launch party was an evening event (European time), we have decided to offer this second launch party as a morning event (European time), which will allow for a different set of members to attend during regular waking hours! We have scheduled this event for NOVEMBER 19, from 9-10am GMT, 10-11am CET, 8-9pm AEDT. Please save the date, and please double-check your time zone on https://www.worldtimebuddy.com/ (and make sure you enter the exact date, since some regions/countries “fall back” before the date of the launch party).

If you would like to launch your book, please register here: https://wwu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJUqc-2rqTwiG9JFFKSO92Iqy3lFev99VNeW and send us an email at publications@sharpweb.org to receive the template for the launch PPT, which we will ask you to fill out and return. We have about a dozen slots, and we look forward to hearing from you. Authors who would like to launch books are asked to sign up by November 12, 2020.

All others are welcome to register for the event here:

The ECR Coffeehouse: a Workshop for Early Career Researchers in Book History

SHARP would like to invite you all to the virtual event The ECR Coffeehouse: A Workshop for Early Career Researchers in Book History on 21 October 2020 at 11am–12.30pm (PDT) / 2–3.30pm (EDT) / 7–8.30 PM (BST) / 8–9.30 PM (CEST).

The event will take place on Zoom. Please follow the link to register:

Finishing a PhD is a big feat in itself. But ECRs also have to consider their career options in an increasingly challenging economic climate. After their PhDs, some book historians might choose to pursue postdoctoral teaching or research positions, whereas other might apply their skills and knowledge in fields such as librarianship or publishing. Others might follow different paths altogether.

Aimed at current PhD students, those who have recently completed their PhDs, and anyone who considers themselves to be an ECR, this SHARP Coffeehouse brings together three speakers who will talk about their respective experiences of transitioning from being a PhD student to postdoctoral scholar, librarian, and independent scholar:

Ann-Marie Hansen is a Radboud Excellence Postdoctoral Fellow at Radboud University, Nijmegen, the Netherlands, working on Early Modern print and intellectual culture. Following on from her PhD at McGill University, she has held research and teaching positions at the universities of St Andrews, Toronto, Rennes and Utrecht.

Henning Hansen is Senior Academic Librarian at the University Library at The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø, where he acts as subject librarian for History, Archaeology, Literature, and Classical studies. He also lectures in book history and methodology and is the rare books and map curator.

Marie Léger-St-Jean is a freelancer, a digital humanist, and proud independent scholar working on nineteenth-century transnational transmedia mass culture. She is the founder of and mastermind behind Price One Penny, a bibliographical and biographical database about the countless publishers and authors involved in the production of cheap literature in London from the 1830s to the 1850s

Following on from this, there will be plenty of opportunity for participants to talk about their experiences, share knowledge and provide perspectives. We will also use this event to think about how SHARP can do more as an organisation to support ECRs working on book history.

The event is organised by SHARP Executive Assistant Ellen Barth, Recording Secretary Vincent Trott and Director of Transnational Affairs Jan Hillgärtner.

SHARP research development grants for BIPOC scholars

SHARP is committed to enhancing the presence of Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour in its community, and supporting the progression of BIPOC scholars in their academic/research careers. In order to support training and career development, and in a desire to respond actively to the issues of racism and under-representation, SHARP is offering five $500 grants to support projects by BIPOC scholars (at any stage of their career).

We are delighted to announce that applications for these grants are now being accepted.

Details of the grants and (the very easy to fill in) application form are available on our website here: https://www.sharpweb.org/main/research-development-grants-for-bipoc-scholars/

Applications close on the 1st September 2020. Please do circulate this grant widely, across all of your networks, and contact awards@sharpweb.org if you have any questions.

We look forward to receiving your applications.

SHARP in Focus, June 15-19, 2020

Mark your calendars for SHARP in Focus, June 15-19, 2020. It will be a week of all kinds of book history all for you on all your devices! There’ll be a virtual book launch highlighting recent publications by members, pedagogy brainstorming, a peek into the new SHARP News, and of course, our Annual General Meeting and awards ceremony! We will also be opening a SHARP coffeehouse for informal conversations with Executive Council members about SHARP throughout the week and finish the week with #SharpFriday conversation. More information will be on the website soon.

SHARP Regional Liaison Reports

SHARP is pleased to announce that its regional liaison annual reports are now available online: please follow the link under the My SHARP section of the website.

These reports date back to 2012, and have been compiled by our regional liaisons. The archive is not entirely complete but it does offer a unique and valuable insight into SHARP-related research and activities from around the world, often gathering regional information together in one place that is not available from other sources.

Happy browsing,

Simon Frost, Director of Transnational Affairs