Trinity Long Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin, 7-8 July 2017

Keynote Speaker: Dr Wim Van Mierlo (Loughborough University)

In recent decades there has been a gradual yet dramatic shift in the means by which scholars engage with literary archives, as the widespread digitization of manuscript texts and the comprehensive shift to digital research tools has changed the nature of scholarly routes into archival material. There has also been a simultaneous shift within archives themselves, as the increasing prevalence of born-digital works necessitates radical changes in methods of curation and preservation.

“Literary Archives in the Digital Age” aims to gather scholars together in order to consider these changes; the conference aims both to showcase contemporary archival research and to reflect on the opportunities and challenges presented by 21st-century archival study. We invite theoretical discussions around self-reflective methodological questions as well as considerations of practical issues such as copyright and access to archival material. We will also consider what Susan Howe has called the “telepathy of archives” – the chance encounters and hidden voices that guide the archival researcher’s journey – and ask how the critic’s encounter with documentary material is altered by digital media. The conference will be an opportunity for dialogue between (among others) curators and literary critics, and researchers working on archives located here in Dublin and those who have explored archives abroad.

Possible topics for consideration include (but are not limited to):

· Cataloguing and preservation

· Word processing and born-digital texts

· Marginalia and correspondence

· Genetic and textual scholarship

· Genetic editing projects

· Copyright and ownership of archival material

· The use of digital tools in navigating archives

· Contemporary access to archives

· Archival items of significance by association; “numinous” objects

· Navigating gaps in archives and/or fragmented archives

· The materiality of digital archives

We also invite proposals for panels or roundtables on a common theme.

The organisers invite abstracts (to: of 250 words for proposed 20 minute papers by the 20th of March. Further details will be posted on our website,