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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Thomas Frank Lockwood
ENGL 593
Seattle Campus

Textual Criticism

Introduction to paleography, codicology, analytical and descriptive bibliography; examination of the major contributions to textual theory in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries; practice in applying textual theory in editing literary works.

Class description

This is one of the four required core seminars in the graduate Textual Studies Program (the others are Oral and Manuscript Texts, Hypertext, and Textual Theory). The seminar gives an introduction to the history of printing as an art and a means of textual transmission, as well as a practical view of hand and machine press printing. Also included: introductory surveys of such topics as descriptive and analytical bibliography, the production, transmission, and editing of printed texts, the history of the book, and current textual and editorial theory. Students will also get practical experience in the editing of printed texts. Some seminar sessions will be held in Suzzallo Special Collections in order to provide first-hand access to examples of early modern print and book history. Visiting lecturers and specialists on the course topics will also be scheduled into the seminar. The professor himself is in the middle of a massive three-volume editorial project on Henry Fielding for the Oxford Press, part already published and part forthcoming, and the seminar students will also get a possibly frightening inside view of the messy workings of such a project.

There will be two group projects and a critical paper. We will also take a field trip to the Thorniley Collection of early printing press technology at the West Coast Paper Company, where everybody gets a shot at operating a hand press (watch your fingers).

No previous work in this subject is assumed for the seminar. If you have questions or would like more detail about the seminar and what it will involve, please feel free to get in touch with Tom Lockwood (

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Thomas Frank Lockwood
Date: 11/01/2004