Palaeography and codicology encompass skill sets which are applicable and of use to a broad range of disciplines across the Humanities. Most students encounter them for the first time at graduate level, in spite of their wide-reaching implications for our understanding and interpretation of the texts and documents with which we work. The approaches taken to teaching and using these skills vary according to the subject area, and interdisciplinary collaboration is often informal.
Teaching the Codex Colloquia
Teaching the Codex was launched with a colloquium at Merton College Oxford on 6th February 2016 as a special event in the calendar of Merton’s History of the Book Group. This event brought together academics from a range of disciplines who are experienced in teaching palaeography and codicology, which enabled a series of discussions on diverse pedagogical approaches. Our second colloquium, with panels on art history, music in manuscripts, outreach, and different approaches to manuscript pedagogy in continental and anglophone contexts, took place on 6th May 2017. A third colloquium took place on 24th October 2019 entitled ‘Decentring the Codex’: it brought together scholars who work on, and have experience in teaching, manuscript studies across a range of alphabets with script-based panels focusing on Hebraic, Arabic, Chinese, Armenian, and Latin manuscripts.
We hope that the discussions stimulated by this project will lead to the sharing of resources between disciplines. The Teaching the Codex website facilitates discussions and resource-sharing in a digital forum via monthly guest blog posts and occasional Teachable Features. Follow us here and on Twitter (official hashtag: #teachingcodex) to keep up with further announcements.
We are grateful for the sponsorship of: the Merton College History of the Book Group (2016, 2017, 2019); Oxford Medieval Studies, sponsored by the Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH) (2016, 2017); the Lancelyn Green Foundation Fund (2016, 2017, 2019); the Craven Committee (2016); the Society for the Study of Medieval Languages and Literature (2017); the Oxford Bibliographical Society (2019); and the Association for Manuscripts and Archives in Research Collections (2019).