This ambitious well researched and timely study sets out to revise our understanding not only on early modern womens roles in book production but also of their myriad contributions to the entire communications circuit including the commissioning manufacture distrution and consumption of print publications in england and between england and the continent. Grossly material things women and book production in early modern england helen smith this is the only comprehensive study of womens roles in writing making and using early modern books an interdisciplinary work drawing on the insights of literary criticism historical study art history musicology and anthropology. The title of helen smiths book is a studiously defiant snub of virginia woolfs then putative argument made in her a room of ones own of 1928 that renaissance women participated little if at all in the authorship and production of books smiths women centred concern with the english book trade is lightly reflected in the jacket cover a detail from gabriel metsus an old woman with a . In a room of ones own virginia woolf described fictions as grossly material things rooted in their physical and economic contextsthis book takes woolfs brief hint as its starting point asking who made the books of the english renaissance and what the material circumstances were in which they did so. Helen smiths grossly material things women and book production in early modern england argues that the search for the missing woman writer has now become a search for her books those she wrote but also those she edited annotated compiled commissioned patronized typeset and hawked
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