Several student-groups from Dr. Randy Ingram’s “Early British Literature and Media” returned to the lab in early April to plan and execute a “re-mediation” of a text from the time-period. Earlier in the semester, the entire class (all 23 of them!) visited the lab for a full week to typeset and print a decidedly anachronistic text: “Alphabet Aerobics” by Blackalicious. The goals with that project were three-fold: first, to consider the features of oral literature (abecedaria and mnemonic devices, for example); second, to consider the overlaps and departures between oral literature and print (“Alphabet Aerobics” is in fact an “unstable” text, and we worked between and across multiple versions to produce our own, ossified in print); and third, to gain insights into the specific technologies of moveable type and letterpress printing. Each student set a full couplet (many memorized theirs in the process!); and by the end of the week, we were able to print the full broadsheet–our typefaces, by the way, run the gamut, from Goudy Text (imitating Gutenberg’s blackletter) through Bodoni and Bodoni Shaded on into Gill Sans and lovely mid-twentieth century faces like Brush Script.
Some in the class decided to return for the end-of-semester “re-mediation” project. One student group is printing an edition of Queen Elizabeth’s poetry (which circulated in manuscript only, and was only published posthumously). That edition will be altered by group members and the public. Interested to see what happens…
Another student group is producing an extract from Milton’s Areopagitica.
As always, with lots of perspectives and questions in the lab, I’m the one learning the most! These items will be presented, along with the groups’ description of their process, at the Verna Miller Case Symposium. I can’t wait to see how the work evolves between now and then.