Robert Darnton in Europe

On behalf of the Royal Library, the SAXO Institute at the University of Copenhagen, and the European research project CULTIVATE a seminar on the digitization of cultural heritage is being organized in Denmark with Professor Robert Darnton as a speaker. Robert Darnton is Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and Director of the Harvard University Library. Darnton dedicated a lot of his work to the future of the book and the debates of publishing and copyright. He is well known because of his critics concerning Google, like “Google & the Future of Books” and “Six Reasons Google Books Failed“:

“Google is not a guild, and it did not set out to create a monopoly. On the contrary, it has pursued a laudable goal: promoting access to information. But the class action character of the settlement makes Google invulnerable to competition.” (..)

Darnton was in Belgium last month for a lecture on the future of the book and thus will be in Europe again two months from now, according to the following events:

’A New Digital Republic of Letters?’
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
10:00 am – 3:45 pm
Blixen Seminar Room, The Black Diamond, The Royal Library,
Søren Kierkegaards Plads 1, Copenhagen

This seminar offers the chance to discuss the pros and cons of digitization with the speakers:
* Robert Darnton, Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor at Harvard and Director of Harvard University Library
* Dr. Paul Ayris, University College London and Director and Acting Group Manager at UCL Library Service. President of LIBER, the Association of European Research Libraries
* Jill Cousins, Programme Director at Europeana – The European Library
* Helle Porsdam, Ph.D. University of Copenhagen
* Erland Kolding Nielsen, Director of the Royal Library and Copenhagen
University Library. Former President of LIBER

For information about the seminar please contact Helle Porsdam at the SAXO Institute: The seminar will be held in English. Attendance is free of charge, but registration is necessary due to the limited number of seats. Please register by email: Closing date for registration is June 1.

‘Blogging, Now and Then (250 years ago)’
Wednesday June 15th 3.15-4.30

University of Copenhagen, SAXO Institute
Room to be announced

Long before the Internet, Europeans exchanged information in ways that anticipated blogging. The key element of their information system was the “anecdote,” a term that meant nearly the opposite then from what it means today. Anecdotes, dispensed by “libellistes” and “paragraph men,” became a staple in the daily diet of news consumed by readers in eighteenth-century France and England. They were also pilfered, reworked, and served up in books. By tracking anecdotes through texts, we can reassess a rich strain of history and literature.

Robert Darnton is Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and Director of the Harvard University Library. He is the author of, among other books, The Great Cat Massacre: And Other Episodes in French Cultural History (Vintage Books, 1985), George Washington’s False Teeth: An Unconventional Guide to the Eighteenth Century (W.W. Norton, 2003), The Case for Books: Past, Present, and Future (Public Affairs, 2010), and Poetry and the Police: Communication Networks in Eighteenth-Century Paris (Harvard University Press, 2010).