INF 388K.05 - Rare Book and Special Collections
Administration of rare book and manuscript collections. Introduction to analytical bibliography.
Three lecture hours a week for one semester.
Special collections are composed of objects that require specialized storage and care due to their uniqueness, rarity, contextual significance, and/or reputation. This course will introduce students to the concepts, development and organization, and preservation of such collections through case studies of UT’s collections and conversations with their administrators. From Late Prehistoric Caddoan vessels to Lead Belly recordings to David Foster Wallace’s papers, the diversity of the objects and documents in UT’s special collections reveal the educational value of the collections as well as their many possibilities for use, and challenge us to consider how we can be better stewards of their riches. We will explore similarities and differences among the ways these collections are preserved and described. Other topics to be covered will include collection development, conservation/preservation, digitization and newer technological initiatives, bilingual collections, storage, fundraising, reference, and more. Selected readings and in-class conversations will create a framework for interviews with professionals in the field, such as curators, librarians, software developers, public affairs representatives, directors, and education coordinators.