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Master class – Robert Darnton (Harvard University)

Master class Robert Darnton

Date: 26 September 2012
Venue: Bungehuis room 1.01, Spuistraat 210 Amsterdam
Open to: PhD candidates and advanced RMa students
Fee (non members): € 50.00
Registration is closed.

Robert Darnton, Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor en director of the Harvard University Library, will host a master class on current and past blogging, discussing the methods and concepts of doing that kind of cultural history. This master class is open to PhD students and advanced RMA students in the field of cultural history, book history, but also media studies.

In the evening professor Darnton will present the closing lecture of a SPUI 25 series on the future of the book in the Singelkerk. Find the program here. We warmly recommend you to attend the evening program as well.


The master class will be divided into two sessions during the day, while the evening program in the Singelkerk, while not obligatory, is warmly recommended and can be taken as the third part of the master class. You have been registered for it already. In the morning professor Darnton will present a keynote lecture, which will be followed by a general sessions of questions with regards to the keynote, chaired by prof. dr. Inger Leemans (VU). The afternoon session will be a hands on, work in progress, class. PhD researchers and RMa students will discuss their own research project with both prof. Darnton and prof. Leemans.

Morning session (11:00 – 12:30)

11:00     Introduction by prof. dr. I. Leemans (VU)

11:10     Keynote: “Blogging Now and Then (250 Years Ago)”

12:00     Questions and discussion

12:30     lunch

Afternoon session (13:00 – 14:30)

13:15     Seminar: “Literature & letters now and then”

The afternoon seminar will be focussed on methods of research and research practices. To related issues will be discussed: 1) analogue sources in the digital age; and 2) the Republic of Letters in the 21st century. The first theme pertains to the question of how one deals with historical sources in the digital age of today, for instance; or, alternatively, how the historian deals with digital sources. The second theme investigates whether 21st century developments such as the ubiquity of the internet and Wikipedia in particular may bring the 18th century ideal of the ‘Republic of Letters’ into being—but in what form?

Evening programme: 20:00 – 22:00 hrs

Robert Darnton: ‘Digitize, Democratize: Libraries and the Digital Future’

Location: Singelkerk, Singel 452.