Paper in Medieval England

From Pulp to Fictions
 
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Date of Publication:
 
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Short description:

Explains the methods and knowledge to understand how and why paper was used in medieval writing and beyond.

Long description:
Orietta Da Rold provides a detailed analysis of the coming of paper to medieval England, and its influence on the literary and non-literary culture of the period. Looking beyond book production, Da Rold maps out the uses of paper and explains the success of this technology in medieval culture, considering how people interacted with it and how it affected their lives. Offering a nuanced understanding of how affordance influenced societal choices, Paper in Medieval England draws on a multilingual array of sources to investigate how paper circulated, was written upon, and was deployed by people across medieval society, from kings to merchants, to bishops, to clerks and to poets, contributing to an understanding of how medieval paper changed communication and shaped modernity.

'Paper in Medieval England is a learned and judicious book, underpinned by Da Rold's deep and broad reading. While its argument offers several thoughtful interventions that will invite paleographers, cultural historians, and literary scholars to revisit some of their assumptions about paper, the real value of this monograph is more fundamental still: Da Rold's study restores paper to its rightful place in literary history.' Sebastian Sobecki, Speculum
Table of Contents:
Paper and culture in medieval England: an introduction; 1. Paper stories; 2. The economics of paper; 3. Writing on paper; 4. The character of paper and its use in medieval books; 5. Paper in the medieval literary imagination; 6. Epilogue: the age of paper.