The Social Life of Books was jointly designed and taught by Benjamin Bankhurst and Benjamin Pauley, who created the syllabus, assignments, and assorted tutorials.

This site aggregates material written by the students in the course on their individual course blogs. Visitors are encouraged to click through to view all student contributions in their original settings.

The course was offered as part of the Mellon Foundation-funded COPLACDigital program, led by Professors Jeffrey McClurken of the University of Mary Washington and Ellen Holmes Pearson of the University of North Carolina Asheville. The instructors would like to thank Professors McClurken and Pearson and the staff who supported this program at the University of Mary Washington (notably Ms. Leah Tams) and at UNC Asheville (notably Mr. Greg Gillingham), as well as the staff of COPLAC, including director Bill Spelman, Ms. Claire Bailey, and Ms. Emma Anderson.

Banner image credits:

  1. Detail of Jost Amman, “Der Buchdrücker” in Eygentliche Beschreybung Aller Stände auff Erden (Frankfurt, 1568). Wikimedia Commons
  2. Detail of “Light Reading with a Vengeance,” Punch 72 (January 27, 1877): 30. HathiTrust
  3. Detail of J. J. Harley, “Reading-Room of the Boston Public Library,” Every Saturday (January 28, 1871): 81. Wikimedia Commons See also HathiTrust: