Welcome to The Modernist Archives Publishing Project (MAPP). This resource, currently under construction, is a critical digital archive of early twentieth-century publishing history. The official launch of the Hogarth Press digital archive will take place in June of 2017 at the International Virginia Woolf Conference hosted at the University of Reading.
MAPP allows its users to access digitized letters, books, pamphlets, sketches, and drafts to understand the process of producing books at the Hogarth Press. By bringing together materials from library special collections and archives in the UK, the US and Canada, MAPP captures the practices of individual publishers at particular moments in time.
In the early twentieth century, publishing houses, big and small, proliferated. Despite the importance of these institutions and their interrelations to an understanding of modernism, scholars have only recently begun to move beyond isolated studies of individual houses to examine translateral networks of authors, artists, editors, press workers, and texts across different publishing venues. Prompted by the challenges of amalgamating large amounts of material from a range of diverse archives, MAPP acts as an aggregated collection of twentieth-century publishing histories in the form of an interactive digital resource.
Why the Hogarth Press?
MAPP begins by focusing on a well-known but insufficiently studied modernist publisher: Virginia and Leonard Woolf’s Hogarth Press, founded in 1917. While the Press is famous in literary circles as Virginia Woolf’s self-publishing operation for her most experimental works of fiction, it also had a varied list, strategic marketing, and international reach. It was at the heart of a movement to reshape the publishing landscape of interwar Britain, and produced important works of literature and culture including the early poems and stories of T.S. Eliot, Nancy Cunard, and Katherine Mansfield, the colonial novels of Laurens van der Post, and the English translations of Sigmund Freud. It also championed a wide selection of popular, established writers alongside new, first-time authors. The Hogarth Press’s history also spans the whole of the twentieth century: it was acquired by Chatto & Windus in 1946, and in 2012, Random House reactivated the Hogarth Press as an imprint targeting new and emerging talent in fiction. Digitizing, annotating, and reconfiguring the network relations amongst these diverse texts within the wider public sphere of modernist publishing is where MAPP aims to make a key intervention: it positions the Hogarth Press as both case study and catalyst to a broader understanding of how publishing houses as creative and business enterprises shaped the modernist movement and the discourses of twentieth-century culture.
Updates as work on MAPP progresses will be posted on this site (particularly through the "Blog" and "Presses" pages). Please feel free to get in touch if you are interested in hearing more about the project.
You can find us on Twitter @MAPP_Project!