An exhibition proposing a new culture of memory and archiving in the true spirit of the beehive


Literary Honeycombs

A conversation with Anthony Grafton exploring the storage and retrieval of texts before modern times

Fields of Knowledge
  • Curatorial practice
  • Memory
  • Philosophy / Theory

Organizing Institutions

Slought, Annenberg Rare Book & Manuscript Library at the University of Pennsylvania


Aaron Levy


Thaddeus Squire, Peregrine Arts


Erica Fruiterman, Michael Zansky

Opens to public





Van Pelt-Dietrich Library
University of Pennsylvania
Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104


25% Formal - 75% Informal

Slought and the Annenberg Rare Book & Manuscript Library at the University of Pennsylvania are pleased to announce a public conversation with Anthony Grafton on Thursday, February 17, 2005 from 5:00-6:30pm on the 6th floor of Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

This event has been organized in conjunction with "The Revolt of the Bees, Wherein the Future of the Paper Hive is declared," a concurrent exhibition at the Rare Book & Manuscript Library that proposes a new culture of memory and archiving in the true spirit of the beehive.

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Currently the Dodge Professor of History at Princeton, Anthony Grafton studied classics, history and history of science at the University of Chicago and University College London. He joined the Princeton faculty in 1975. His many honors include the Behrman Prize for Achievement in the Humanities at Princeton; a visiting professorship at the École Normale Supèrieure, Paris; and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin. He has delivered the J.H. Gray Lectures at Cambridge; the E.A. Lowe Lectures in Paleography and Kindred Subjects at Oxford; the Rothschild Lecture in the History of Science at Harvard, and the Meyer Schapiro Lectures at Columbia University. He served as Warburg Professor in Hamburg, Germany in 1998-99.

In Anthony Grafton's wide-ranging body of work, projects which analyze the history and development of scholarly practices figure prominently. Hailed by one critic as "historian extraordinaire," Grafton is the author or editor of eleven books, including a major two-volume study of Renaissance humanist Joseph Scaliger. His intellectual interests range from the history of the classical tradition, particularly during the Renaissance; to the history of science; to the history of books and readers; and to scholarship and scholarly practices such as forgery and the citation of sources.

"The Revolt of the Bees artfully celebrates a set of images and associated practices that dominated the world of high culture for centuries. It teaches us to imagine with new vividness how early modern playwrights and poets, scholars and scientists, ladies and schoolboys went about the vital task of mastering and using books--at a time when books were the most powerful source of knowledge about life, the universe and everything, and a new way of reading could bring about events as radical as the Protestant Reformation and the English Civil War. This collection of evidence and the imaginative and sometimes subversive way in which it is displayed make a distinctive contribution to the new field of history of books and reading—an interdisciplinary study currently in an explosive phase of expansion."

-- Anthony Grafton

Related publications

Theorists Anthony Grafton, Thomas Keenan and others explore historical metaphors of beehives and a new culture of memory and archiving in this interdisciplinary approach to curatorial and institutional practice.

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