The Bibliographical Society of Canada (BSC) is pleased to announce that Laura Gerlitz, a student in the third year of the Master of Library and Information Studies and Master of Arts in Humanities Computing program at the University of Alberta, has been selected as the recipient of the Emerging Scholar Prize.
Her paper, “‘How to Sell a Harlequin: Bringing the Digital Humanities into Reader’s Advisory,” will be presented at the BSC’s annual conference in May 2018.
This paper emerges from Ms Gerlitz’s Master’s thesis, which involves research through image and text analysis on the covers of over two hundred and fifty of the first novels published by Harlequin Enterprises. She has been personally digitizing the covers, and after the completion of her thesis intends to work with the Bruce Peel Special Collections at the University of Alberta, which houses a substantial collection of early Harlequin publications, to create an online exhibit highlighting the books. By drawing out patterns and relationships that can be found in the back-cover summaries and front cover artwork her project will highlight marketing strategies utilized by Harlequin through the wrappers, and will consider how targeted audiences were able to use the wrappers to identify books they would be interested in reading. A revised, article-length version of the paper will be published in the Papers of the Bibliographical Society of Canada, subject to peer review. The prize also includes a grant of $500.
The Emerging Scholar Prize was established by the BSC in 2012 to support a scholar at the beginning of her or his career who is undertaking research in bibliography, book history, or print culture broadly defined, including the study of the creation, production, publication, distribution, and uses of manuscripts, printed books, or electronic texts.