Closing the Blog

Jyrki Hakapää

This blog was created a bit more than a year ago to precede Book Culture from Below – The Eighteenth Annual SHARP Conference. The conference took place in Helsinki, 17-20 August 2010. For organizers of the conference, it was a splendid occasion, filled with interesting presentations and lively discussions.

The conference webpage is still available for viewing. The program of the conference and the abstracts of the presentations are presented at Scientific Program page. Reviews and articles about the conference are collected to the Press page. Pictures of the conference are presented at the conference flickr photostream. Finally, tweets related to the conference have been saved here (#sharp10) and here (#sharp2010). Three events of the conference were also webcasted, but they were not recorded for later viewing.

But now it is time to close the blog: thank you for following Book History Up North and Book Culture from Below. The editors are very happy that so many readers found this blog. Book history is a growing scientific field in Nordic countries, and we are looking forward to see how the current discussions and findings evolve to new publications and meetings.


Book Culture from Below - The 18th Annual SHARP Conference

Jyrki Hakapää

Book Culture from Below - The 18th Annual SHARP Conference will begin next week in Helsinki, Finland. We are thrilled to have almost 250 scholars arriving to Helsinki. Many book historians can not attend the conference, but there are various ways of following the conference online, too.

The full program and abstracts of the conference are now available at the conference website's program page.

Three events of the conference will be webcast. All feeds will be linked to the conference website. All webcasts will be shown live and will not be available for later viewing.

The events to be webcast are:

Wed 18th of August 2010, 15.45–17.15 Finnish time, 12.45-14.15 GMT
University of Helsinki, Porthania, P1 Grand Lecture Hall
General panel discussion: Conceptual Re-evaluations from below
Chair: Dr. Ian Gadd (Bath Spa University)
Discussants: Doc. Anna Kuismin (University of Helsinki), Prof. Jonathan Rose (Drew University), Prof. Johan Svedjedal (Uppsala University), Prof. Nils-Erik Villstrand (Åbo Akademi University)

Thu 19th of August 2010, 16.00–17.30 Finnish time, 13.00-14.30 GMT
University of Helsinki, Porthania, P1 Grand Lecture Hall
Keynote lecture: Exposing the Oral and Literary Background of Fairy Tales
Chair: Doc. Kirsti Salmi-Niklander (University of Helsinki)
Key note lecture by Prof. Ruth B. Bottigheimer (Stony Brook University): Upward and Outward: Fairy Tales and Popular, Print, and Proletarian Culture 1550–1850
Comments by Prof. Satu Apo (University of Helsinki) and Dr. Caroline Sumpter (Queen's University, Belfast)

Fri 20th of August, 16.00–17.30 Finnish time, 13.00-14.30 GMT
University of Helsinki, University Main Building, Grand Festive Hall
General panel discussion: How the Aspect ‘from below' Changes Book History
Chair: Prof. Outi Merisalo
Discussants: Doc. Esko M. Laine (University of Helsinki), Doc. Tuomas M.S. Lehtonen (Finnish Literature Society), Dr. Ann Steiner (Lund University), Dr. Jonathan Wild (University of Edinburgh)

You can also follow and discuss about the conference events via Twitter. The tag for the SHARP 2010 conference in Helsinki is #sharp10. The conference tweets can be found via link on the conference webpage.


Nordic and Baltic Book History Cooperation

Before the SHARP conference in Helsinki, Gothenburg will host The World Library and Information Congress: 76th IFLA General Conference and Assemble, in 10-15 August 2010.

The massive event includes also sessions on library history. For one of these sessions, docent Ilkka Mäkinen (University of Tampere) has written a presentation of HIBOLIRE (Nordic-Baltic-Russian Research Network on the History of Books, Libraries and Reading), one of the co-organizers of Book Culture from Below -conference. HIBOLIRE has been active since 2006, but it is a dircet continuation of Nordic book history cooperation since 1990s. The network is funded by Nordforsk until the end of 2010.

HIBOLIRE has arranged and co-organized multiple seminars and conferences in Nordic and Baltic countries and supported young researchers' training and academic careers. The researchers of the network have also published a book last year, called Library Spirit in the Nordic and Baltic Countries: Historical Perspectives. The articles of the book concentrate on studying the idea of public library: how the idea of library, which would open its doors to all readers, spread in the Baltic Sea Region region and what kind of local ideologies, institutional varieties and networks were created.

In his IFLA presentation, Mäkinen does not only introduce various activities of the HIBOLIRE network, but also discusses on the possiblities and difficulties of the international scientific co-operation. The effort to bind eight distinct national research traditions and varying institutional support under one umbrella of book history has certainly been difficult, but discussions on the methodological issues, transnational research approaches and comparative aspects have offered common basis for cooperation.

Mäkinen's whole report is available here.