Conference: #Reading, Göttingen, 29 September – 1 October 2016

Our associated member Elisabeth Böker has sent us the following conference announcement:

International Conference organized by the German Research Foundation (DFG) Research Training Group 1787 “Literature and Dissemination of Literature in the Digital Age”, 29.09.-01.10.2016
Historical Building of the Göttingen State and University Library (Papendiek 14, 37073 Göttingen, Germany)

grk1787In the wake of the ‘Digital Revolution’ the traditional concepts of ‘reading’ and ‘readers’ are challenged: The long-established cultural technique evolves into ‘Social Reading’, the passive consumer into an active ‘prosumer’. Worlds which were previously contained between books’ covers are now increasingly migrating into such transmedial spaces as films, audio books, and (computer) games. The mere consumption of literature seems outdated since a participatory culture has grown out of the Web 2.0. Readers can now play an active role within a community, discuss with like-minded people, and enrich an author’s world with their own ideas. The establishment of new electronic reading devices facilitates these new forms of participation. E-readers, smartphones and tablet computers can be easily connected to the Internet, and thus simplify communication and exchange with other readers and authors. These changes also have an effect on the book market: electronic commerce companies become places of literary communication and attempt to replace personal service in bookstores with customers’ reviews.

In the digital age, the possibilities of interacting with literature have become manifold. Readers are encouraged to become producers themselves. In social networks, forums, and on blogs, they can voice their opinions, rate books, or even write their own literary texts. Social reading platforms and reading communities enable readers to offer direct feedback to publishers and authors and, thus, to actively participate in the literary scene. As a result, the production and dissemination of literature become subject to change as well – the lines between the different agents of the literary field are blurred. These extensive developments in the sphere of literary reception constitute a rewarding and dynamic field of research.

The preliminary program can be downloaded here.

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