By Joseph A. Dane
"As bibliographers or e-book historians, we practice our paintings by way of altering the functionality of the items we research. We hardly decide up an Aldine version to learn one of many classical texts it comprises. . . . Print tradition, less than this suggestion, isn't a medium for writing or inspiration yet a ancient item of analysis; our bibliographical box, our personal concoction, turns into the real referent of the gadgets we outline as its foundation."—From the Introduction
What is a e-book within the examine of print tradition? For the student of fabric texts, it's not just a singular reproduction wearing the original strains of printing and maintenance efforts, or an variation, repeated and repeatable, or a car for ideas to be abstracted from the actual replica. but if the bibliographer situates a ebook reproduction in the equipment of booklet background, Joseph A. Dane contends, it's the recognized set of assumptions which govern the self-discipline that bibliographic arguments privilege, repeat, or problem. "Book history," he writes, "is us."
In Blind Impressions, Dane reexamines the sphere of fabric e-book historical past through wondering its most elementary assumptions and definitions. How is print outlined? What are the boundaries of printing historical past? What constitutes proof? His concluding part takes shape as a chain of brief stories in subject matter and edition, contemplating such concerns as two-color printing, the composing stick utilized by hand-press printers, the bibliographical prestige of e-book fragments, and the functionality of scholarly representation within the electronic Age. Meticulously targeted, deeply realized, and infrequently contrarian, Blind Impressions is a bracing critique of ways students outline and clear up problems.
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