NASSCFL 47th International Conference

“Literature, the Book and the Book Trade in 17th-century France”

Organizing committee: Mathilde Bombart ; Sylvain Cornic ; Edwige Keller-Rahbé ; Michèle Rosellini

Scientific committee: Claude Bourqui (University of Freibourg), Jean-Marc Chatelain (French National Library), Juliette Cherbuliez (University of Minnesota), Michèle Clément (University Lumière-Lyon 2), Sébastien Drouin (University of Toronto), Nathalie Ferrand (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique), Sylvaine Guyot (Harvard University), Grégoire Holtz (University of Toronto), Jean Leclerc (University of London-Western Ontario), Olivier Leplatre (University Jean Moulin-Lyon 3), Roxanne Roy (Université du Québec à Rimouski), Nicolas Schapira (University Paris Est-Marne la vallée), Deborah Steinberger (University of Delaware), Laurent Thirouin (University Lumière-Lyon 2), Geoffrey Turnovsky (University of Washington), Rainer Zaiser (University of Kiel).

The 17th century in France is marked by unprecedented growth in the book trade that touched all principal centers of production and diffusion. Lyon, particularly, in the preceding century with prestigious print shops, played a decisive role in this evolution. While some authors were concerned about a development that multiplied book production and enlarged readership by profoundly transforming how the literary world functions, the book trade gained in legitimacy as literature was constituted into an autonomous social sphere. A century later, the Encyclopédie would highlight « how important literature is to the State, & how much the Book Trade owes to literature » (« combien les Lettres importent à l’Etat, & combien tient aux Lettres la Librairie »).

The 47th international NASSCFL conference will gather 17th-century scholars in Lyon to investigate the links forged in this period between literature, the book, and the book trade. The conference will consist of looking into political, economic, and cultural interactions, and examining the representations and depictions thereof. Examining such a problematic makes perfect sense in Lyon, as it was, under the Ancien Régime, the second editorial center after Paris. Papers will explore their political, economic and cultural aspects, as well as representations of these interactions in literary and other kinds of texts. Lyon, the second printing center of the Ancien Régime after Paris, is the perfect place for such an investigation.

We envisage multiple avenues of research in the scope of this study:

– Books and the Diffusion of Knowledge

– Literature and the Book Trade in Lyon

– From Page to Screen: 17th century Studies Meets the Digital Humanities

– Literature and the Control of Books

– The Book and its Mediators

– Women, the Book and the Book Trade

– Editorial Politics and Editorial Genres

– Periodicals

– Theater and the Book Trade

– Books and Religion

– Libraries and Collections

– The Manuscript and the Printed Work

– The Book Trade, Books, and Images

– Book Trade and Bookshops in Fiction

– Imagining the Book

Roger Chartier will open the plenary session, with Jean-Dominique Mellot delivering the closing speech.

Abstracts proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) have to be sent to the chair of the selected panel by August 31st, 2016.


1/ Books and the Diffusion of Knowledge (Rainer Zaiser)

As Marshall McLuhan highlighted in his book The Gutenberg Galaxy (1962), the invention of the printing press revolutionized access to knowledge at the beginning of the modern era. The transition from the manuscript to the book was, for the diffusion of knowledge, a leap that can be compared to the more recent transition from the printed page to digital storage. Although during the 16th century printed production contributed to the diffusion of humanism by making classic texts available to an erudite readership, the expansion of the book trade that marked the beginning of the 17th century fostered a reconfiguration of knowledge – which was notably a consequence of the emergence of the « new science », in physics and cosmology, progress in experimental methods, and exploration of new territories – and the conversion of a larger reading public, with the « appropriation of the discourse of knowledge » (R. Chartier) that this implies.

This session will, in particular, allow us to explore the permeability of sciences and literature from the beginning of their co-existence on the book trade and within libraries. More precisely, proposals would be welcome that investigate the links between knowledge production and fictional, or poetic, production, considering the evolution of learned books towards a non‑specialist readership (short treatises and dialogues, small-format publication, generalization of translation, etc.). Investigations into the manner in which these interactions foster the emergence of a literary historiography and criticism that enable a view of literature as a site of knowledge would be equally welcome.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to rainer.zaiser

2/ Literature and the Book Trade in Lyon (Michèle Clément)

Books in Lyon during the 16th century have been the object of numerous studies, and of a continually updated bibliography, the Bibliographie lyonnaise, edited by Henri Baudrier (1895-1921), whereas studies of it book trade during the 17th century are less common, with interest mainly focused on Paris, as evidenced by the doctoral thesis of Henri-Jean Martin. Does this sharp imbalance in the research reflect the real lack of influence of Lyon’s book trade? Can we, following Maurice Audin in 1972, speak of the 17th and 18th centuries as an «intermediate era» between a « golden age of the Lyonnais printing press » in the 16th century and a 19th century which would go on to revolutionize the techniques of the printing press? Do the links between the world of the printing press and the intellectual world slacken after the period of the League?

Does the exodus of the Huguenot printers to Geneva definitively change the landscape of the book trade in Lyon? Between historiographical legend and the real world context, this session will be focused on re-evaluating the evolution of the book trade in Lyon from the 16th to the 17th century.

Indicative Bibliography:

Le Siècle d’or de l’imprimerie lyonnaise (collectif), Paris, éd. du Chêne, 1972.

Maurice Audin, Les Origines de l’imprimerie à Lyon et son premier siècle d’activité, La Courneuve, OFMI, Garamont, 1973.

Henri et Julien Baudrier, Bibliographie lyonnaise. Recherches sur les imprimeurs, libraires, relieurs et fondeurs de lettres de Lyon au XVIe siècle, Lyon-Paris, 1895-1921 vol 1 à 12 ; (Baudrier, Suppl = La Perrière Yvonne de, Supplément provisoire à la Bibliographie lyonnaise du Président Baudrier, Lyon, Centre lyonnais d’histoire et de civilisation du livre, 1967).

Anne Béroujon, Les écrits à Lyon au XVIIe siècle. Espaces, échanges, identités, Grenoble, Presses universitaires de Grenoble, 2009.

Alfred Cartier, Maurice Audin et Eugène Vial, Bibliographie des éditions des De Tournes imprimeurs lyonnais, 2 vol., Genève, Slatkine reprints, 1970 (e. o. Paris, 1937).

Natalie Zemon Davis, « Le monde de l’imprimerie humaniste : Lyon », dans Histoire de l’édition française. T. 1, dir. R. Chartier, J.-P. Vivet et H.-J. Martin, Promodis, 1983, p. 255-277.

Sybille von Gültlingen, Bibliographie des livres imprimés à Lyon au seizième siècle, Baden-Baden & Bouxwiller, Koerner, 14 vol. parus, [1992-.

Michel Jourde, Lyon une capitale du livre à la Renaissance : (6 films).

William Kemp : base Lyon 15-16 (bibliographie lyonnaise des XVe et XVIe siècles : en cours).

Simone Legay, Le milieu des libraires lyonnais au XVIIe siècle, Doctorat d’histoire, Lyon 2, 1996.

Henri-Jean Martin (éd.), Cinq études lyonnaises, Genève-Paris, Droz-Minard, 1966.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to michele.clement

3/ From Page to Screen: 17th-Century Studies Meet the Digital Humanities (Claude Bourqui)

The rise of the Internet has profoundly altered the profile of 17th-century Studies: easier access to documents, and to less familar corpuses, new research tools (databases, online editions, search engines and curators, article visualization tools), as well as new outreach and publishing tools. These encourage us to question and revisit the concept of the book as an object, which a long scholarly tradition has taken for granted. We are inviting participants to reflect on the impact of the digital revolution and of the Digital Humanities on our practices and studies. The objective is to present long term projects as well as works-in-progress, while investigating the aftermath of the digital turn. Will it generate new avenues of study? What benefits can we anticipate for our knowledge and understanding of the 17th century? How will the digital turn affect the communication of our knowledge through publishing and teaching?

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to claude.bourqui

4/ Literature and the Control of Books (Nicolas Schapira)

In the 17th century, any actor in the production and circulation of printed works had to cope with increased controlling mechanisms: a new regime of book trade privilèges, the normalization of approvals for religious books, heightened surveillance of printing presses by the guild, new police measures against banned books; how do these tightly interdependent, though heterogeneous means for controlling printed works, with its relative efficiency, as we know it, interact with the literary work limited in their effectiveness as we know they were, confront the literary world in this crucial moment of the latter’s institutionalization? Proposals might focus on documents tied to the policing of books – regulations, treatises, letters of privilege or approval – in their relationship with literature. But all texts that bear witness to this encounter, including those that, deliberately or not, work the censorship system, can be addressed. Indeed, proposals can consider the whole range of uses made by authors (who might themselves, moreover, be agents of the police) of the mechanisms for controlling print, whether for publicity or political reasons. In this same perspective, proposals examining the meanings underlying literary representations of the tools, procedures, and agents of censorship are equally welcome.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs)

to nicolas.schapira

5/ The Book and its Mediators (Sébastien Drouin and Grégoire Holtz)

Since the foundational works of Henri-Jean Martin on the book trade in the 17th century, new approaches have highlighted the importance of different mediators (booksellers, printers, translators, polygraphs, editors, secretaries...) in the production and the diffusion of the printed work. From Pierre Bergeron to Valentin Conrart to Pierre Bayle, more or less well-known figures have played a determinant role in the culture of print by connecting authors and booksellers, the public and authorities. The objective of these sessions is to probe into the different possible role these mediators play in the conception, writing, and publication of books and to bring to light the diversity of media and types of printed works associated with their activities (grey literature, occasionnels, the press...).

Through this inquiry, we will focus on:

– What kinds of tensions and what power relations appear amid this larger circulation of the printed work? What role did authorities play with respect to these mediators? Did the mediators of the book play a role in the history of the covert circulation of various dissenting works?

– What are the links between French officines and the large centers of foreign printing production that developed by virtue of these mediators? Who are the mediators of religious works? Is their story the same in Paris, Geneva and Amsterdam?

– How do manuscripts circulate between authors and printers? Can we identify the networks of book mediators? What does their correspondence tell us?

– What careers were made possible by these different positions? What obstacles put a halt to these careers? How did they evolve over the course of the century?

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to

sdrouin and gregoire.holtz

6/ Les femmes au colophon: Women, the Book and the Book Trade (Juliette Cherbuliez)

Well before the abolition des corporations du livre in 1791, women played diverse and often contested but continual roles in the editing, printing and diffusion of print. We invite papers of either historical or theoretical/analytical perspective. Interventions might address on the one hand the historical specificity of women in the world of print, or on the other, the dynamics giving shape to women’s participation in the circulation of knowledge more broadly:

– The professionelles du livre, from printers and binders and including the important status of la veuve of printer/librairies.

– Networks of knowledge and circulation in which women were embedded: circulation of ideas, femmes savantes.

– The role of print in shaping the «feminine» (emergence of la presse féminine; libraires de la galanterie).

– The role of print in furthering women’s «access to culture» and in also further separating women from the élite masculine.

– Reactions against print, strategies of female anonymity, avoidance and refusal.

– The emergence of masculinity as an effect of print, and women at the mercy of print.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to cherbuli

7/ Publishing Practices and Editorial Strategies (Geoffrey Turnovsky)

Proposals for this session may address any aspect of the publishing practices and editorial conventions and innovations that shaped the world of books in the 17th century. Henri-Jean Martin famously described the print industry in this era as shaped by the Counter‑Reformation and by political and economic integration into state administration – indeed, by a convergence of the two. Proposals might extend or complicate Martin’s account, focusing on the role of guilds, publication rights through the privilège, or other forms of state regulation and sponsorship (positions of imprimeurs du roi and the creation of the Imprimerie royale). Proposals might, alternatively, address editorial strategies in an expanding marketplace for books (represented by the Galerie du Palaisbut also notable for its geographic reach across France and Europe), the business models and publishing activities of a new kind of libraire as cultural mediator removed from the print-shop and attuned to consumer demand, and related typographic developments such as the triumph of small formats, new marketing categories (eg. nouveautés), and new genres and editorial perspectives (eg. the repackaging of earlier forms in smaller, modernized, more accessible form). In addition, proposals are welcome on dissident, “unofficial” or extra-territorial printing, including pamphleteering, cross‑border collaborations, counterfeiting, and migrations (notably of Huguenot printers into Holland, Germany, England, and Switzerland).

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to gt2

8/ Periodicals (Deborah Steinberger)

This panel aims to explore the status and practices of the editors, authors and readers of seventeenth-century periodicals in French. For instance, how did the role of the editor-in-chief develop over the course the “long seventeenth century”? How did editors and authors interact and collaborate with one another? To what extent did they disseminate propaganda and/or participate in what we call today public relations? On the other hand, is the notion of “journalistic objectivity” operative during this period? Concerning the readers of the periodical press, what do we know about how the publications reached them and how they circulated? What reading practices were prevalent, and did these vary according to the reader’s sex, social status, or geographical location?

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to steind

9/ Theater and the Book Trade (Sylvaine Guyot)

The remarkable growth of the publication of dramatic texts in the 17th century is both the sign and the vector of the interest and value attached to theater in the period’s nascent literary field. Participants in this session are invited to broach the subject from multiple perspectives, including: the circuits of production and diffusion of printed drama (the respective role of booksellers, printers, and playwrights); the structure of the playbook market (specialization, collaboration and competition, the relations between Paris, the provinces and foreign presses, the circulation of copies); market logics of dramatic publishing (new plays vs. reprints, publication frequency, variations in prices); editorial strategies of promotion and legitimacy (format, engravings, paratexts, and variants); and finally the role of publishing and the book trade in the promotion of theater as an authorized form of cultural consumption, as well as that of playwrights as authorial figures. From a point of view that seeks to go beyond the issue of an antagonism between text and performance or a study of the different states of a same play, the book trade will appear to be a complex site for the fabrication, the practice, and the commerce of theater art.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to guyot


10/ Books and Religion (Laurent Thirouin)

The percentage of religious works saw consistent growth in the France of the 17th century, at one point amounting to half of all printed production. The heterogeneity of this corpus is evidently significant: Bibles, liturgical books, works on patrologyand theology (positive or speculative), hagiographies, books of devotion, and spiritual literature, etc. We will focus on the editorial division of labor in the publication of religious books. What place do the main religious orders and their strategies hold in the landscape of the book trade? How do the intra-Catholic polemics (with special attention to the links with the Jansenist crisis) or the controversies with the Huguenot community tie in with publication decisions? What are the processes of ideological filtration and the ways of overcoming them? What linguistic choices are present, between the place of Latin and the growth in French translations? Attention to the materiality of the book, its elaboration, and modes of diffusion is one manner through which to find back the big religious issues that are at play throughout that century.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs)

to laurent.thirouin

11/ Libraries and Collections (Jean-Marc Chatelain)

The 17th century marks at once the apogee of the humanistic model of the library established over the two previous centuries, and the beginning of a reconsideration of the fields of knowledge on which it rested. At the heart of this tension, three major lines of reflection can be proposed in order to better understand the meanings thus accorded to the act of gathering intellectual and editorial production in the form of a collection:

– How 17th-century scholars improve the humanistic process of reassembling the classical legacy of literary texts?

– Which new forms of collection develop, which determine new contents, new uses of the book, and a new readership?

– What theoretical work accompanies the practice of book collecting and what role is accorded to the library as a mean of regulation of in a literary world disrupted by the growing overload of publications?

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs)

to jean-marc.chatelain

12/ The Manuscript and the Printed Work (Nathalie Ferrand)

The 17th century is far from being a world without manuscripts, where the printed page triumphantly swept everything else aside. On the contrary, the practice of the manuscript was alive, well, and polymorphous. Whether overlapping, as it did, with the uses and functions of the book to circulate the written word – to the point where one still speaks in the Ancien Régime of the “manuscript book” (“livre manuscript”) (cf. F. Moureau 1993) – or bearing witness to the more or less individual working practices of authors when it comes to states of texts within the sphere of literary creation, the manuscript of the 17th century can refer to a multiplicity of objectsand writing practices. Therefore, a precise and patient study is needed to determine its status and meaning,especially given that, as J.-M. Chatelain has shown, a catalogue vital for scholarship on the manuscript is still lacking for France (cf. J.-M. Chatelain, 2009). This session, devoted to the manuscript and all its forms and meanings, aims to contribute to this study, particularly in a context where the online publication of digitized manuscripts by libraries makes them more accessible and a priori easier to interpret. We thus invite proposals that present case studies or comparativeor methodological analyses that consider the manuscript to be a significant object. Attention to lesser-known archives of writers will be particularly appreciated.

Indicative Bibliography:

Bernard Beugnot, Robert Mélançon (dir.), Les voies de l’invention aux XVIe et XVIIe siècles : études génétiques, Montréal, Département d’Études françaises, 1993.

Revue XVIIe siècle, n°192, Juillet-Septembre 1996, 48e année, n°3 « Les usages du manuscrit ».

Fernando Bouza, Hétérographies. Formes de l’écrit au siècle d’or espagnol, Madrid, Casa de Velásquez, 2010.

Roger Chartier, La main de l’auteur et l’esprit de l’imprimeur XVIe-XVIIIe siècle, Paris Gallimard, 2015.

Jean-Marc Chatelain, « Sur le statut du manuscrit littéraire au XVIIe siècle », in Génétique matérielle, génétique virtuelle, P. Dandrey (dir.), 2009, p. 33-47.

Patrick Dandrey (dir.), Génétique matérielle, génétique virtuelle. Pour une approche généticienne des textes sans archives, Laval, PUL, 2009.

Luc Fraisse (dir.), Le manuscrit littéraire : son statut, son histoire, du Moyen Âge à nos jours, Paris, Klincksieck 1998.

Almuth Grésillon et Jean-Louis Lebrave (dir.), Écrire aux XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles. Genèses de textes littéraires et philosophiques, Paris, CNRS-Éditions, 2000.

Charlotte Guichard, « Qu’est-ce qu’une œuvre originale ? », De l’authenticité. Une histoire des valeurs de l’art (XVIe-XXe siècle), Paris, Publications de la Sorbonne, 2014, pp. 11-17.

Harold Love, The Culture and Commerce of Texts. Scribal Publication in Seventeeth Century England, Amherst, University of Massachusetts Press, 1998 [Oxford, 1993].

Henri-Jean Martin, Histoire des pouvoirs de l’écrit, Chapitre VII « Fonctions et formes de l’écrit (XVe-XVIIIe siècle) », seconde édition, Paris, Albin Michel, 1996.

François Moureau (dir.), De Bonne main, La communication manuscrite au XVIIIe siècle, Universitas, Paris - Voltaire Foundation Oxford, 1993.

François Moureau, La plume et le plomb. Espaces de l’imprimé et du manuscrit au siècle des Lumières, Paris, PUPS, 2006.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to nathalie.ferrand

13/ The Book trade, Books, and Images (Olivier Leplatre)

In light of the great diversity of editorial production, this session proposes to take stock of the illustrated book in the 17th century, endeavoring to integrate different approaches. The illustrated book, where the text is reconfigured and changes status, is situated at the crossroads of cultural fields (aesthetic, technical, economic, sociological…) which, in bestowing upon it a certain specificity, also impose constraints, submit it to potentially contradictory criteria, and alter its value. Investigating the state of the image in books of the classical era (and how we reflect on certain « critical » sites, such as the frontispiece), we will attempt to discern the role of different actors around the author: the printer-wholesaler developing his or her editorial strategies; the illustrator (designer, engraver) dependent on the codes of the image, subjected to the demands of the market and confronted with the new technique of intaglio (taille-douce) ; and finally, the reader-spectator, whose reception, support, and taste permitted the existence and promotion of the illustrated book.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs)

to olivier.leplatre

14/ Book Trade and Bookshops in Fiction (Jean Leclerc)

The bookshop is a place where booksellers, authors and readers met; talking not only about literary life, but also about current events, politics, and religion. Whether in theatre (Corneille’s Galerie du Palais), novels (Sorel’s Le Berger extravagant) or poetry (Boileau’s Le Lutrin), characters often gather around the book as object. The representation of the book trade fulfills different functions, whether it is a question of enhancing effects of realism by the description of familiar places, opening new horizons through interwoven discussions and stories, or yet of performing a literary satire by listing a catalogue of sold works. The focus of this panel will thus be to explore the forms and meanings of fictional representations of the bookshop and of publishing.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to jlecler

15/ Imagining the Book (Roxanne Roy)

Whether real or fictional, the book becomes an object of reflection and representation for writers of the Grand Siècle. From books that are lost, forgotten, (re-)found, to books that are longed for or dreamt of, to those that are criticized, defended, censured, or burnt, the examples are innumerable. But what is the status of the book in the imagination of the era and how is it manifested? This session will investigate the diverse forms that books take when they are depicted by writers in their texts, as well as the meanings of these representations. It will equally explore the relationships, real or fictional, between the author, the reader, or the character, and the book. In what ways and contexts are these links manifested within the texts, and what do they tell us? The panel will consider the perception, figuration, and representation of the book in literary texts of the 17th century, and explore the practices of reading and writing associated with them.

Please send your proposals (max. 250 words/1500 signs) to roxanne_roy