Last fall, I taught courses in the history of graphic design and the history of printing (both Visual Arts courses). Before I got things started, I posted an entry here on “Printing History Videos: Some Bookmarks”. These were just a fun set of videos for me and for the students to at least watch the processes involved for we start our readings (and get bogged down with theory, with assignments, etc.).
This coming fall, I’ll be teaching a course entitled “Mulberry, Mummies & Marshes: A History of Paper” at Stevenson University. Unlike the previous courses at UMBC, the students in this seminar don’t come from one program or major. They are studying History, English, Visual Communication, Business, Education, and Chemistry. What a perfect group to study paper–from every dimension. Finally, what I’ve been waiting for: a truly interdisciplinary group! Now the challenge is on. How can I best bridge the gaps between all of these majors.
As I get started on the syllabus this summer, I thought I might do the same as before and post a few videos I’ve bookmarked. The course encompasses a global perspective with emphasis on materials and techniques from China, India, Egypt, and Europe. This is a course in Public History and, although there are no workshops or laboratories available for this seminar, I would like to incorporate a few guest speakers–scholars, archivists, and arts practitioners to give a couple of workshops on how paper is (and was) made, used, preserved, and discussed. Sometime in July or August, I’ll begin a website for class blogs and to document our progress.