BHPC Program Events

BHPC’s annual events program is organized by the BHPC Events Committee. To keep informed of BHPC events, contact our Program Coordinator to be added to our email list. We also maintain a calendar of other events of potential interest to the BHPC community in the Toronto area and beyond.


Orientation for Incoming Students
Tuesday, 21 September 2021, noon – 1:00 pm
Online event open to students, faculty, and friends of the BHPC program. Contact our Program Coordinator to register.


The Ninth Annual BHPC J. R. de J. Jackson Lecture
Janice Radway (Northwestern University)
“Girls, Zines, and Their Travels: Imagining Lives, Crafting Archives for a New Century”
Thursday, November 4, 2:00 pm
Zoom Webinar open to the public; please register in advance at

Hosted by the Centre for Digital Humanities, X University
Organized by the Book History & Print Culture Program, University of
Toronto, with support from the McLuhan Centre for Culture & Technology


Descriptive and analytic accounts of girl zines have proliferated in the years since they first seemed to explode onto the public scene during the 1990s. Most of these accounts, whether in the mainstream press or in scholarly circles, focus on girl zinesters’ engagement with feminism and trace their origins to the Riot Grrrl movement, which is itself usually explained as originating in the activities of a small number of female-fronted bands that developed in the pacific northwest. In fact, however, research in the numerous zine archives that have been organized since the late 1990s suggests that girls and young women of the period actually took up the practice of zine-making and zine circulation for a range of reasons and in somewhat different contexts. Drawing on extended research in these archives, this lecture will consider the question of what it might mean to take account simultaneously of the variability of girl zine practice and the fact that, despite such differences, significant numbers of girls and young women together gravitated to the zine form during this highly unsettled decade. What was it about the 90s in particular, and the specificities of the zine form itself, that incited young women not simply to more public forms of self-expression but to the social activity of seeking out contact with others beyond familial and local friendship circles? And why did their zines make their way into library archives in less than ten years? This lecture will argue that girls turned to zine-ing as part of a struggle to re-imagine subjectivity and sociality in ways that were more fluid, porous, and collaborative than the models recommended by older forms and institutions like the novel, the school, the bourgeois family, and even the magazine. The lecture will also venture the suggestion that “girl zines,” as a genre and an archive, were a collective product generated by a range of individuals and institutions laboring in their own distinct fields for their own purposes, yet whose contiguous work generated an identifiable and useful cultural form.

Janice Radway is the Walter Dill Scott Professor of Communication Studies and Director of the Gender & Sexuality Studies Program at Northwestern University. Radway is widely known for her scholarship on readers, reading, books, and the history of middlebrow culture. She has served as the editor of American Quarterly, the official journal of the American Studies Association, which elected her President in 1998.  She is also the author of Reading the Romance: Women, Patriarchy and Popular Literature, which won the Fellows Book Award as a “classic” in the field of Communication from the International Communication Association and was recently translated into Mandarin and published in Bejing. She is also the author of A Feeling for Books: The Book- of-the-Month Club, Literary Taste, and Middle Class Desire and co-editor of American Studies: An Anthology and Print in Motion: The Expansion of Publishing and Reading in the United States, 1880-1945, which is Volume IV of A History of the Book in America. Currently, Radway is working on a book about girls and zines in the 1990s and beyond.


Workshop on Queer and Kink Pulp Fiction at the Fisher Library and the Bonham Centre’s Sexual Representation Collection
Led by David Fernández (Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library) and Patrick Keilty (Faculty of Information and Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies)
Tuesday, November 23, 3:00 – 5:00 pm

Online event open to the public. To register, email; registered participants will receive the Zoom link by email on the day of the event.

Co-sponsored by the Book History & Print Culture Collaborative Program
and the Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies


The term ‘pulp’ describes a genre of publishing with important ties to the history of LGBTQ+ cultures and movements in North America and Britain in the postwar era. Mass-paperback publishers issued millions of copies of pulps—illustrated paperbacks or magazines printed on cheap paper made from wood—on lesbian, gay, queer, trans, and kink subjects from the 1950s onwards. In this workshop, we will pay attention to the publishing practices evident with the goal of defining pulps as sites of bibliographical investigation and as sources for the study of queer subjects in connection to one of the most popular print cultures of the twentieth century.


Tuesday, November 30, 4:00 – 6:00 pm
Online event open to students, faculty, and friends of the BHPC program. To register, email; registered participants will receive the Zoom link by email on the day of the event.

This year’s Librorum will take the form of a multidisciplinary roundtable on book history scholarship, moderated by Alan Galey, with BHPC PhD students who have recently completed their BKS 2001 practicum projects:

Ellen Forget (Information): video (7 min.)
Shaun Midanik (Art): project website and video (10 min.)
Florian Mueller (German): project description and title page images
Christina Pasqua (Religion)
Philip Trotter (English): project description

Descriptions of the students’ practicum projects will be posted here about a week prior, allowing the participants to focus on discussion with each other and the audience.



E-Lit Workshop: Making Electronic Literature and Simple Games in Twine
Led by Adam Hammond (Department of English) & Alan Galey (Faculty of Information), with Ellen Forget and Anna Kalinowski
Friday, January 28, 2:00 – 4:00 pm EST
Online event open to BHPC students and non-BHPC graduate students in our participating units, as well as undergraduate students in the Book & Media Studies, Digital Humanities, and Bachelor of Information programs. Spaces are limited to 20 students. To register, email; registered participants will receive the Zoom link by email on the day of the event.


This student-focused workshop will introduce students to Twine, an easy-to-learn web-based platform for creating electronic literature and simple videogames. Participants will learn the basics of Twine, and we will also look at some of its advanced capabilities. The workshop will also consider Twine in a book-historical context, as one of the most popular authoring and publishing platforms of its kind, and as an important development in the emerging history of born-digital literature.

No coding experience is required, though some familiarity with HTML and CSS is an asset for participants who wish to go beyond the basics. No software installations are required, though participants are advised to update their web browser in advance.


2022 BHPC Graduate Student Colloquium
The Material Fantasy of the Book: Imaginations Beyond Print
11 March 2022
Online event open to the public. For the call for papers and other details, see


The Nineteenth Annual Frederick Alden Warren Lecture
Alan Galey (University of Toronto)
“A Bibliographical Disturbance: Teaching and Learning in Book History After 2020”
Tuesday, April 26, 4:00 pm
Zoom Webinar open to the public; please register in advance at

Hosted by the John W. Graham Library, Trinity College, University of Toronto


When something disrupts the normal process of making a book, the disruption often leaves a material trace which textual scholars call a “bibliographical disturbance.” The year 2020 will long be remembered as a similar kind of disruption writ large, leaving its own material traces in our scholarship, careers, and lives. For the Book History & Print Culture (BHPC) program at the University of Toronto, 2020 also happened to be its twentieth anniversary as a graduate program. What should have been a year of celebration instead became a year of adaptation, as the COVID-19 pandemic forced us to rethink BHPC’s normally library-based, book-focused courses for remote delivery. BHPC’s twentieth anniversary became an occasion to re-examine the field’s rationale and pedagogy—just as bibliographical disturbances are opportunities to understand a book’s structure and nature.

In that spirit, this talk will reflect on lessons learned about book history education during the pandemic. From the representation of physical books on digital screens, to the status of born-digital literature, to the social value of the book arts, to questions about diversity and equity in the field of book history—2020 brought a reckoning with all these topics and more. Yet book history education has never been more necessary than today, and textual scholarship has important work to do in the post-2020 world. This talk will look back on what we’ve learned from twenty years of book history at the University of Toronto, and will look ahead to the next twenty.

Alan Galey is director of the collaborative program in Book History and Print Culture ( at the University of Toronto, and Associate Professor in the Faculty of Information with a cross-appointment to English. He is the author of The Shakespearean Archive: Experiments in New Media from the Renaissance to Postmodernity (Cambridge University Press, 2014) and co-editor of Shakespeare, the Bible, and the Form of the Book: Contested Scriptures (Routledge, 2011). His articles have appeared in journals such as Book History, Shakespeare Quarterly, Archivaria, and Textual Practice, on topics ranging from the digitization of Shakespeare, to the bibliographical analysis of ebooks, to Marshall McLuhan’s marginalia on James Joyce, to concert recordings of The Tragically Hip. He presently holds a SSHRC Insight Grant for a project called The Veil of Code: Bibliographical Methods for Born-Digital Texts (