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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: October ::
Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September 2003)
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.2005  Wednesday, 15 October 2003

[1]     From:   Richard Burt <
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        Date:   Monday, 13 Oct 2003 09:46:58 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
2003)

[2]     From:   D Bloom <
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        Date:   Monday, 13 Oct 2003 09:31:11 -0500
        Subj:   RE: SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
2003)

[3]     From:   D Bloom <
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 >
        Date:   Monday, 13 Oct 2003 09:31:11 -0500
        Subj:   RE: SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
2003)


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Richard Burt <
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Date:           Monday, 13 Oct 2003 09:46:58 -0400
Subject: 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
2003)

Perhaps a little Bourdieu may help.  There are different kinds of
capital in play in the academic (and other) publishing economy, symbolic
as well as economic.  Publishing is more about prestige and symbolic
capital for the academic writer, more about economic capital for the
publisher.  The two kinds of capital are not wholly separable nor are
they necessarily in conflict, as an author like Slavoj Zizek will get a
relatively large advance in comparison with most academic authors
because of his prestige, which translates into sales and greater
distribution, which translates into greater prestige, etc.  Moreover,
prestige translates into job offers, tenure and promotion, conference
invitations, invitations to contribute articles, and so on.  In
Bourdieu's terms, the distinction between symbolic and economic capital
works, however, largely through a misrecognition of this dynamic:
writers are understood to be writing to produce knowledge; they are not
in the profession for the money, the prestige, etc.  In other words,
knowledge is knowledge (just as art is art) as long as it is "pure,"
outside of capital (commerce always being read as crass).  (I am not
entirely persuaded by Bourdieu, as he can't really account for aesthetic
or academic value;  Zizek gets read in the first place because a lot of
people think his work is good.)

I don't think the publishing economy is "crazy," but there are some
interesting (or troubling) distinctions between journals and presses
that seem inexplicable to me.   For example, presses pay both readers of
mss and authors while journals do not.  And some presses pay editors and
authors of chapter in book collections while others pay only the editor
or editors.  Readers for journals seem to me to be the worst off.  They
get no credit  and no perks for their work, nor do they get much in the
way of prestige (in some cases their names may appear on a page that
lists the editorial board).  Editors, however, usually get course
release(s) for their work.  I don't see any advantage of publishing in
journals that would explain this difference.  Readers reports for a book
mss or chapter in books are, in my experience, just as lengthy and acute
as any journal readers and there usually is no significant difference in
the time it takes to publish.   In some cases, the press brings out the
book faster than the journal brings out the article (one journal in our
field is well-known for taking up to three years after acceptance).  If
one is interested in getting remuneration for one's writings or reading
a mss,  it follows that one  should  dispense with publishing in
journals altogether.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           D Bloom <
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Date:           Monday, 13 Oct 2003 09:31:11 -0500
Subject: 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
Comment:        RE: SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary Studies: 9.2 (September
2003)

Jonathan Hope asks plaintively:

"The article raises an issue I've been wondering about recently: why do
those of us who are academics collude in the frankly crazy economy of
academic publishing, where academics give the reports of their research
(paid for by public money) away free to publishing firms, who then sell
these reports back to our institutional libraries, and us, at hugely
inflated prices?

"Would anyone like to defend the current situation?"

I have no desire to defend it, but the answer, I believe, lies in the
nature of markets. I doubt that the publishing firms make anything on
any but a tiny handful of academic publications. This publishing can
take place at all only because it is subsidized -- though indirectly.
Rather than having the state in charge of it (as in a Marxist economy)
there is nobody in charge of it (capitalist-anarchist economy). Each
academic and university press has its own system although they all work
much the same -- as that seems to be the only way it can work at all.
Thus, the system clanks along, missing on two out of five cylinders. It
is allowed to do so only because nobody in a position of power gives a
damn about it.

As with other aspects of publishing (such as the music business), the
cyber-world will doubtless change it -- but whether for the better or
not remains to be seen. But for the moment we have some academic
publication of some merit readily accessible, though at high cost to
libraries. Would it be better in either a true capitalist economy or a
Marxist one?

Cheers,
 don

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Al Magary <
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Date:           Tuesday, 14 Oct 2003 01:00:10 -0700
Subject: movement (was SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary
Comment:        Open Access movement (was SHK 14.1987 Early Modern Literary
Studies)

Jonathan Hope wrote:

>The article raises an issue I've been wondering about
>recently: why do
>those of us who are academics collude in the frankly crazy
>economy of
>academic publishing, where academics give the reports of their
>research
>(paid for by public money) away free to publishing firms, who
>then sell
>these reports back to our institutional libraries, and us, at
>hugely
>inflated prices?

Scholars and Internet revolutionaries are tearing down the scholarly
publishing bastille rather quickly.  Those interested in this issue
should look into the well-developed Open Access movement.  A few links
for newbies that I requested a couple weeks ago from one of the leaders
of Open Access, Peter Suber, a philosopher who edits the SPARC Open
Access Newsletter:

--SPARC home page for the Open Access Newsletter and Open Access Forum
http://www.arl.org/sparc/soa/index.html

--Open Access News blog:
http://www.earlham.edu/~peters/fos/fosblog.html

--FAQ for the Budapest Open Access Initiative:
http://www.earlham.edu/~peters/fos/boaifaq.htm

--an introduction for non-academics, "Open Access to Science and
Scholarship," forthcoming from the InfoPaper for the December 2003
meeting of the World Summit on the Information Society:
http://www.earlham.edu/~peters/writing/wsis.htm

--a couple of interviews that discuss copyright issues:
Sam Vaknin, "Copyright Law and Free Online Scholarship: Interview with
Peter Suber," United Press International, February 19, 2002. Part 1,
http://www.upi.com/view.cfm?StoryID=15022002-015414-4119r
Part 2,
http://www.upi.com/view.cfm?StoryID=15022002-020541-2918r

A signal Open Access event occurred this weekend, the debut of Public
Library of Science/Biology.  As witnessed by Google News: Browsers swamp
science Web site Newark Star Ledger - 2 hours ago
There are lots of scientific journals, and the debut of another one
normally would not raise many eyebrows.

The Public Library of Science launches Ars Technica Public Library of
Science Launches Slashdot
Sydney Morning Herald - Reuters - MSNBC - Straits Times - and 13 related
"

Those should be links, but for the complete index on this, go to:
http://news.google.com/news?num=30&hl=en&edition=us&q=cluster:www%2ereuters%2eco%2euk%2fnewsArticle%2ejhtml%3ftype%3dscienceNews%26storyID%3d3599327%26section%3dnews

or click here:  http://tinyurl.com/qud1

The Public Library of Science is the brainchild of several San
Francisco/Bay Area scientists, including Nobellist Harold Varmus.
http://www.plos.org/

Cheers,
Al Magary

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