Simone Murray, Introduction to Contemporary Print Culture: Books as Media, Routledge, 2020.
Introduction to Contemporary Print Culture examines the role of the book in the modern world. It considers the book’s deeply intertwined relationships with other media through ownership structures, copyright and adaptation, the constantly shifting roles of authors, publishers and readers in the digital ecosystem and the merging of print and digital technologies in contemporary understandings of the book object.
Divided into three parts, the book first introduces students to various theories and methods for understanding print culture, demonstrating how the study of the book has grown out of longstanding academic disciplines. The second part surveys key sectors of the contemporary book world – from independent and alternative publishers to editors, booksellers, readers and libraries – focusing on topical debates. In the final part, digital technologies take centre stage as eBook regimes and mass-digitisation projects are examined for what they reveal about information power and access in the twenty-first century.
This book provides a fascinating and informative introduction for students of all levels in publishing studies, book history, literature and English, media, communication and cultural studies, cultural sociology, librarianship and archival studies and digital humanities.
Table of Contents
Introduction: What is ‘Print Culture’? Part 1: Theories and Methodologies for Understanding Print 1. Medium Theory 2. Book History 3. Political Economy 4. Cultural Policy Part 2: Socio-cultural Dimensions of Books 5. Independent and Alternative Publishing 6. Editing 7. Adaptation: Books Beyond their Covers 8. Book Retailing 9. Cultures of Reading 10. Libraries and Archives Part 3: Book Futures 11. Digital Books 12. The Dream of a Universal Library: Digitising Knowledge
Simone Murray is Associate Professor in Literary Studies at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia, and an elected Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities. She is the author of three previous books, including The Adaptation Industry: The Cultural Economy of Contemporary Literary Adaptation (2012).