The Survival of Medieval Manuscript Culture in the Early Modern Age: The Other Side of a Universal Paradigm Shift

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Undoubtedly, the invention of the printing press by Gutenberg brought about a profound paradigm shift, transforming both the late medieval book markets and the general reading culture. However, as with many paradigm shifts, we need to differentiate in this regard more than scholarship has acknowledged so far. First, many medieval narrative motives, topics and themes continued to be rather popular well into the seventeenth century, if not beyond. Second, manuscript culture did not simply disappear. Instead, as this article outlines, in many areas and especially among the upper social classes, luxury items in the form of manuscripts remained critically important. A closer analysis also indicates that many times practical knowledge (fencing, horse training, medicine, etc.) and personal observations were copied down by hand and thus passed on to the specific audiences without the printing press involved. The manuscript did not disappear at all; instead, it assumed a more specialized function in terms of knowledge, autobiographical reflections and social representation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPublishing Research Quarterly
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2024

Keywords

  • Books of hours
  • Early modern book printing
  • Emperor Maximilian I
  • Family chronicles
  • Froben Christoph von Zimmern
  • Georg von Ehingen
  • Jesuits
  • Letters
  • Manuscript culture
  • Medical tracts
  • Private book collections
  • Recipe books
  • Religious tracts
  • Songbooks
  • Travelogues

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Communication
  • Media Technology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Marketing
  • Management of Technology and Innovation

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Survival of Medieval Manuscript Culture in the Early Modern Age: The Other Side of a Universal Paradigm Shift'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this