at home: Art in Context | Commonplace Books

at home: Art in Context

Art in Context, the Center's gallery talk series, is now online. Presented by faculty, staff, visiting scholars, and student guides, these lectures are held on the last Tuesday of each month during the academic year. Each talk focuses on a particular work of art in the Center's collections, or a special exhibition, and takes an in-depth look at its style, subject matter, technique, or time period.

About this program

Yoonha Hwang discusses commonplace books—compilations of excerpts and passages copied into a notebook—using examples from the Center’s collections that were compiled by women in nineteenth-century England. While the act of commonplacing has been around since antiquity, it was only loosely defined as a practice in the early modern era. Hwang explores how the fluid categorization of these materials has allowed more inclusivity of women’s works in manuscript collections that historically privileged male reading and writing practices.

About Yoonha Hwang

Hwang is the Nadia Sophie Seiler Rare Materials Resident in the Department of Rare Books and Manuscripts at the Center, where she has gained hands-on experience working with and cataloguing rare materials. She received her MLIS from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), with a specialization in Rare Books/Print and Visual Culture, and her BA in English literature and language with a concentration in book studies from Smith College.