Information, Medium, and Society’s Updates

Keith Kopka – Winner of the International Award for Excellence for The International Journal of the Book, Volume 14

The Books, Publishing & Libraries Research Network is pleased to announce the selection of “Christine de Pizan and Emily Dickinson: Feminine Power through Textual Production,” by Dr. Keith Kopka, as the recipient of the International Award for Excellence for Volume 14 of The International Journal of the Book.

This article was selected for the award from among the ten highest-ranked articles emerging from the peer-review process and according to the selection criteria outlined in the referee guidelines.

In his words:

"A great deal of research has been published on Christine de Pizan and Emily Dickinson as individual authors and publishers. However, very little has been published about the ways in which these women, separated by four centuries, but facing similar challenges within their patriarchal environments, used textual production as a means to build authorial personae, to exercise a uniquely matriarchal power as the creators and transformers of their art, and to sanction a rhetorically feminine literary voice. Through historical and textual analysis of each author, this essay contributes a new perspective to the subject of feminism within the field of Text Technologies. By exploring the similarities between modern and medieval publishing practices, this essay illustrates that comparing the works and practices of Pizan and Dickinson presents scholars with a new way to investigate contemporary theories of feminism through textual production. These women were able to subvert patriarchal constructs not only because of their ability to produce texts, but also because of the ways in which they were able to control this production and create desired personal/ professional outcomes, and, in some cases, evoke social or political change. This essay offers an important new perspective on these authors because it highlights their control over the production of their texts as a specifically feminist action within the historical framework of Text Technologies, and argues that the texts themselves are material objects that conduct a distinct feminine power."

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