The Typographic Hub

NOTE: This event is now closed

Text and image in the city

31st May 2013

A Book History Research Network Study Day on print and manuscript culture in British and European towns and cities

During the sixteenth century the business of printing became a constituent part of European urban culture, and this development reinforced the differences between life in the town and life in the countryside. In the course of the remaining five centuries of the millennium, print conquered the world, but also remained a product intimately embedded in urban life: printed matter was manufactured, sold, and largely invented in urban centres. Printed Matters: Printing, Publishing and Urban Culture in Europe in the Modern Period, ed. M. Gee & T. Kirk (Ashgate, 2002), p. 1.

In an age of urban mass literacy, the city as place and the city as text defined each other in mutually constitutive ways. […] As the word city acquired more layers, the uses to which words could be put multiplied, enhancing their disorderly potential. Peter Fritzsche, Reading Berlin 1900 (Harvard, 1996), pp. 1, 4-5.


Caroline Archer Paris Underground: the missing memory of the city; Daliah Bond Defining the Scottish Chapbook: a description of the ‘typical Scottish chapbook’; Gervase French Newcastle's Chapbook Literature: rival identities and popular culture, 1750-1832; Matt Harle Tomorrow’s London: the GLC and London’s abandoned future of the 1960s; Sandro Jung The Topography of Urban Architecture: Peacock's The Polite Repository, 1800-1820; Sarah Kirby, PrintmakerArtist in Residence at the Centre for Urban History; Sarah Laseke Scribes in the City: the urban manuscript production of romances in the 15th Century; Jack Mockford Flash Notes: imitation paper money in late Georgian England; Geraldine Marshall Birmingham’s Graphic DNA: reading the ‘word city’ through signage, architectural letter forms and the typographic landscape;  London’s Little Presses; Rosa SmurraStudium’, Manuscript Books and Urban Landscape: Bologna, thirteenth and fourteenth centuries                                                     

Book History Research Network
Centre for Urban History