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18th Century Book Exhibition in Central Library curated by Graduate Students Abby Broughton, Kathryn Devine, Bonnie Griffin and Cara Wilson

Posted by on Wednesday, June 29, 2016 in Uncategorized.

Sensuality and Textuality:
Experiencing the 18th Century Book

May 2016 through March 2017

Lobby of Central Library, Vanderbilt University


The French Enlightenment is often labeled in literary studies as the period where the novel developed and flourished as a distinct genre. This exhibition was part of a graduate seminar that sought to problematize this interpretation, by broadening and rethinking the definition of terms such as “novel,” “fiction,” and “literature.” The wide and heterogeneous array of texts and images housed in the W.T. Bandy Center’s Morris Wachs Collection, Vanderbilt University’s
Special Collections, and the Vanderbilt University Art Gallery, invites an exploration of the question of the myriad ways in which these eighteenth-century works might be understood as literature, and the unexpected forms of literacy or being literary that come from the experience of reading them.

The works in this exhibition were curated and researched by Abby R. Broughton, Kathryn Devine, Bonnie Griffin and Cara Wilson, graduate students in French 8040, taught by Professor Hanna Roman. The exhibition is a collaboration between the Library and the Department of French and Italian.

To read more click here. 

Achille Devéria. “Enlèvement de Zilia,” Lettres d’une péruvienne. (Paris: Ménard et
Desenne ls. 1822). Lithograph.
Jean-Pierre-Louis de Luchet. Paris en miniature. (Amsterdam. 1784). Marbled paper.
From the Morris Wachs Collection, W.T. Bandy Center, Vanderbilt University Libraries.