7.0575 Univ of Virginia British Poetry Archive (1/90)

Sun, 20 Mar 1994 19:38:07 EST

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 7, No. 0575. Sunday, 20 Mar 1994.

Date: Wed, 16 Mar 1994 22:26:45 -0500
From: "David M. Seaman" <dms8f@etext.lib.virginia.edu>
Subject: UVa British Poetry Archive -- texts available


This announcement invites scholars interested in
Romantic and Victorian literature and poetry to help build an
Internet-accessible electronic library of marked up and scholarly
editions of books of poetry produced between 1780-1900. The project
is being inaugurated with this letter, which is being sent at the same
time that the first two works in the Archive are being put up for
use. These are two works produced by my graduate classes in
the past two years, Mary Robinson's _Sappho and Phaon_ (1796) and
Richard Polwhele's _The Unsex'd Females_ (1798).

The idea is to publish this Archive on the Internet and thus
make the works freely available for study and classroom use. We
are especially interested in works that have gone out of
copyright, or copyright editions that an editor might wish
to include in the Archive. (In the latter case, it would be up
to the editor to secure permission to publish in this Archive, if
such permission were needed.)

The Archive will be put up through the U. of Virginia Library's
World Wide Web server. The texts will be ASCII texts marked up in
HTML (Hypertext Markup Language), a form of SGML (Standard
Generalized Markup Language). Copies of the texts conforming to the
Text Encoding Initiative Guidelines (and parsed against the Oxford Text
Archive DTD) will be available for use with the user's own text analysis
software. ["Guidelines for Submission" are available on the World Wide Web
server and via anonymous ftp from the addresses below].

This HTML text will be prepared for use through World Wide Web clients
such as Mosaic and Cello. Mosaic is a very useable front end, and
HTML is an easily-learned hypertext markup system that has
excellent digital image capability (so that full color images of textual or
contextual materials can be included in the edition, e.g., facsimiles of
mss or printed pages, etc.).

The Archive's http address is:


The Archive's anonymous ftp address is:

ftp etext.lib.virginia.edu
cd pub/britpo

The two initial titles are available now at the above addresses. They
have introductions, notes, and glosses, as well as other scholarly
materials for elucidating the works, including sample facsimiles of
the original texts. Complete facsimiles of the original documents
can be made part of these original models, and contributors to the
Archive are encouraged to think of their editions in those terms.

The Archive's texts are imagined as having more additional scholarly
material than is commonly available in comparable Archives (e.g.,
Chadwyck Healey's English Poetry Full-Text Database, or Brown
University's Women Writer's Project). What most sets this Archive
apart, however, is (a) that it will be freely available to all,
and immediately accessible; (b) that it will be able to include
facsimile and other illustrative material in a hypertext structure;
and (c) that the Archive's texts can grow over time (e.g., if
someone has a note or other material to add to one of the Archive's
works, it can be added). As to the last feature, additions would
have to be made after consulting with the original editor(s),
and then having the changes made on site by those managing the
Archive. (A history of such changes will be provided.)

If scholars get their students to contribute to the Archive,
the students will learn some extremely useful professional
skills, they will have publications added to their records, and
they will be making significant contributions to work in the
field. Anyone can submit an edition to the Archive, however;
indeed, all are encouraged to do so.

Editorial oversight will be provided here at the U. of
Virginia. I will serve as general editor and UVA's Electronic
Text Center will put up the texts through Alderman Library's
World Wide Web server.

Anyone interested in participating in this project should
contact Jerome McGann or David Seaman.

Jerome McGann
Dept. of English, U. of Virginia
email: jjm2f@lizzie.engl.virginia.edu

David Seaman
Electronic Text Center
Alderman Library, U. of Virginia
email: etext@virginia.edu