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Textual Cultures 6.1 (2011) is out, in the mail, and online. I confess that it was for me a “special issue”. Tom Tanselle’s touching tribute to Jo Ann Boydston, who was one of the Society for Textual Scholarship’s early moving forces and a voice of inclusion, and David Greetham’s remembrance of Trevor Howard-Hill, a stalwart defender of all things bibliographic and a fellow editor, are unique additions to this issue. Beyond their exemplary scholarly contributions, Boydston and Howard-Hill gave selflessly to colleagues and to our field. Once you read Tom’s and David’s essays you will understand why they appear at the beginning of the issue.


What might draw some criticism, the diversity of the essays in this issue, especially in light of the number devoted to W. W. Greg (4.2 [2009]), is one of the things that made 6.1 such a delight to edit. Donald McKenzie, Nicolaus Maniacutius, Max Beerbohm, Henry Lawson, Auguste Poulet-Malassis, Ole Worm, and Thomas Percy made informative and wonderfully cross-referential issue-fellows in a remarkably “visual” collection of essays that depended on the careful scholarship of Peter Schillingsburg, Marie Thérèse Champagne, Sarah Davison, Paul Eggert, Nicolas Valazza, and Robert W. Rix. An essential part of this issue depended especially on the skills of our compositor, Tony Brewer, who made text and image flow together in magical ways — a syntagm one seldom sees in journals devoted to philology and textuality.


The reviews in Textual Cultures are, as most have come to expect, anything other than simple bibliographical notices. Akash Kumar tackles the assessment of the “new philology” invoked in the 2010 European Modernity and the Arab Mediterranean with a critical expertise that reminds me of the multidisciplinary rigor of David Abulafia. Tom Farrell’s review of the 2011 Lost History of Piers Plowman is the kind of precise philological corrective that should be, forgive me IUP, photocopied and placed in the back of the book for constant reference like an additional chapter to the book. With his usual expert clarity, Henry Woudhuysen’s critique of Joseph Dane’s 2011 Out of Sorts calls out the construction of the work, published soon after Dane’s 2009 Abstractions of Evidence (see Henry’s review in Textual Cultures 5.1 [2010]). It was, instead, up to our own Alvaro Barbieri to tackle a book whose wide and innovative impact will be felt in textual studies for many years to come, Michelangelo Zaccarello’s Reperta (2008). Known for his ongoing work on Sacchetti’s Trecentonovelle and his edition of the difficult poems of Burchiello, Zaccarello might be best known by STSers for his essay in Textual Cultures 4.1 (2009), for which he won the Executive Director’s Award at the Penn State conference in 2011. Reperta’s far-ranging studies confront not only difficult manuscript traditions, but also the complexities of the relationships between print and manuscript editions in which print editions can sometimes carry more authentic readings.


I will always look back and cherish 6.1 (2011) for the way it came together, the contributors’ wonderful and enthusiastic sense of collaboration (which included some producing copy under difficult circumstances), and for how much the essays taught me.

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