CFP: The World of Shakespeare and Company

The Shakespeare and Company Project, in collaboration with the Journal of Cultural Analytics and Modernism/modernity, invites proposals for articles about Shakespeare and Company, Sylvia Beach's bookshop and lending library in interwar Paris. The articles should be based on documents and data made available by the Project.

In 1919, Beach opened Shakespeare and Company and it immediately became a meeting place for a community of expatriate writers and artists now known as the Lost Generation. In 1922, Beach published James Joyce’s Ulysses under the Shakespeare and Company imprint—a feat that made the bookshop and lending library famous around the world. In the 1930s, she catered increasingly to French intellectuals, supplying English-language books and periodicals from the recently rediscovered Moby-Dick (1851) to the latest issues of The New Yorker. In 1941, she preemptively closed the bookshop and lending library after refusing to sell her last copy of Joyce's Finnegans Wake (1939) to a Nazi officer. After the war, she continued to lend books to friends from her apartment until her death in 1962.

The Shakespeare and Company Project is a digital humanities initiative that uses sources from Beach's papers at Princeton University to reveal what lending library members read and where they lived. What did Gertrude Stein read? Who read Gertrude Stein—or Zora Neale Hurston or Havelock Ellis or Karl Marx? How did the demographics of the lending library change after the Wall Street Crash of 1929? Did men borrow different books than women? Was the Lost Generation really a generation? Is there a connection between where members lived and what they read? Between class and taste? The Project supplies documents and data to address these questions, and many others. Explore the Project. Download Project data.

Proposals for articles are due December 15, 2020, and should be fewer than 400 words in length. Final articles are due July 31, 2021, and should be about 3000 words in length. (Articles with higher word counts will also be considered.) Articles relevant to cultural analytics will be published in the Journal of Cultural Analytics. Articles relevant to modernist studies will be published on the Print Plus platform of Modernism/modernity. Articles relevant to both fields will be published simultaneously in both journals. All articles will be peer reviewed. The feature will be edited by Joshua Kotin (Director, Shakespeare and Company Project) and CDH Lead Developer Rebecca Sutton Koeser (Technical Lead, Shakespeare and Company Project).

Please send proposals (and questions) to shakespeareandco@princeton.edu. The Project team also welcomes feedback and corrections related to the Project.

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