RBS 2005 Course Offerings in
Collecting and Collection Management
Intended for individual book collectors who collect in some aspect of the history of the law and for librarians who have custody of historical legal materials, this course will survey printed and MS materials in Anglo- American law and introduce its bibliography and curatorship. Topics include the history of the production and distribution of law books; catalogs and reference books; philosophy and techniques of collecting; and acquiring books, MSS, and ephemera in the antiquarian book trade.
The objective of the course is to acquaint collectors and librarians with the tools and techniques needed to form focused collections of historical materials in Anglo-American law, and to equip historians and legal scholars in the use of such collections. Particular attention will be paid to planning collections in light of intended use and availability of materials and funds. Following introductory lectures on the role of legal materials in the development of the common law and on the terminology, physical make-up, and determinants of rarity of legal books and manuscripts, the instructors will devote a substantial portion of the course to the bibliography of the field. This analysis will include discussion of the history of the production and distribution of law books, a thorough introduction and evaluation of the principal bibliographies and reference books, and demonstrations of how these tools are used. Emphasis will also be given to the sources of acquisitions (used and antiquarian booksellers, book fairs, auctions, gifts). After a survey of the history and present state of the collection of rare legal materials by individuals and institutions, the course will conclude with discussion of strategies and techniques in collection development. The laboratory sessions will give students hands-on experience in using some of the basic bibliographical tools and antiquarian book price guides.
Students will be expected to have a general knowledge of the history of Anglo-American law. In their personal statement, prospective students should describe briefly their knowledge of legal history and bibliography and their (or their institution's) collecting and/or research interests.
This course is aimed at research and rare book librarians, MS librarians, and archivists whose current responsibilities include the care of collections containing African-American printed and/or MS materials. Topics include: the history of African-American institutional collecting; sources for acquiring materials; developing clienteles of users; description and preservation; and current issues (Afrocentrism vs Eurocentrism, ethics, inter-institutional competition).
C-80. Artists' Books: Strategies for Collecting
The field of artists' books includes work that spans the full spectrum of cultural objects, handmade originals, calligraphic and typographic experimentation, conceptual productions, and works produced in the traditions of fine printing and independent publishing. This course provides critical and historical perspectives from which to conceive of a collecting rationalefor both individuals and institutions.
This course is aimed at individuals and institutions interested in creating a collection of artists' books. To this end, the course begins with discussions of the definition of artists' books, critical approaches to the field, and principles of assessment and understanding based on conceptual, as well as production, values. The course continues with an historical discussion of the evolution of artists' books in the c20, an examination of significant people and presses in the field, and finally a discussion of reference resources. Though the course attempts to be as inclusive as possible, it is focused on helping design a collection strategy, rather than on an exhaustive look at every individual or institution contributing to this burgeoning field. The course focuses on those works that are artist initiated and produced, rather than on works in the fine printing tradition, livres d'artistes, or publisher-driven works, but it does acknowledge the importance of these areas as part of the expanded field of artists' books.
In their personal statement, applicants should describe the purposes to which they plan to put the knowledge gained from this class.