Marlowe in Sheets: Teaching Christopher Marlowe's Books through Digital Materiality
Keywords:Marlowe, Textual scholarship, Book History, Teaching
The online resource Marlowe in Sheets, a sister project to Prof. Tara Lyons’ Shakespeare in Sheets, puts forth Marlowe’s works in a manner never offered before to students and scholars: the original printed but unfolded and uncut quartos and octavos from the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, reformatted and rebuilt into custom downloadable PDFs for academic and public use. Playing with digital reproductions of Marlowe’s widely studied works in their first printed form enriches the study of pre-modern literature by enabling users to navigate and engage critically with the fields of the history of the book, bibliography, and the history of reading. A strong focus on how readers first came across and interacted with early printed texts highlights the marked differences these unassembled works possess in terms of form and appearance compared to their modern-day equivalents, which are generally heavily edited, annotated, prefaced, equipped with reading aids and guides, and, most of all, ready-made.