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Ohio State University Research Foundation (Columbus, OH 43210-1435)
John N. King (Project Director: March 2006 to August 2008)

Seminars for Higher Education Faculty
Education Programs

[Grant products]

$189,789 (approved)
$189,789 (awarded)

Grant period:
10/1/2006 – 9/30/2007

The Reformation of the Book, 1450-1700

A five-week seminar for fifteen college and university teachers in Antwerp, Belgium, and Oxford, England, on the advent of printing and its effects on the Protestant Reformation.

We propose an NEH Summer Seminar on “The Reformation of the Book.” It would investigate the gradual transformation of the production, dissemination, and reading of Western European books during the 250 years following the mid-fifteenth-century invention of printing with movable type on hand-operated presses. In particular, we plan to pose the governing question of whether the advent of printing was a necessary precondition for the Protestant Reformation, which fostered protest against alleged abuses in medieval religious practices and beliefs. Intellectual, literary, religious, cultural, social, and printing historians are currently engaged in fruitful debate over this question and the related problem of whether the impact of printing was revolutionary or evolutionary.