Advertisement

Recognising Literary Festivals

  • Millicent Weber
Chapter
Part of the New Directions in Book History book series (NDBH)

Abstract

This chapter identifies the limitations of existing studies of literary festival audiences, and compares theoretical understandings of audience, readership, reader, and consumer, drawn from across literary studies and book history, media and communications studies, and theatre and performance studies, to develop a new conceptual framework for literary festival audience experience. These understandings are used to supplement and develop theorisations of the literary field, derived from the work of Pierre Bourdieu (The forms of capital. In: Richardson J (ed) Handbook of theory and research for the sociology of education. Greenwood, New York, pp 241–258, 1986; The rules of art (trans: Emanuel S). Polity Press, Cambridge, 1996; The field of cultural production. In: Finkelstein D, McCleery A (eds) The book history reader. Routledge, London/New York, pp 99–120, 2006), in order to account for the complex interplay between both interested and disinterested personal and political motivations for audience members’ attendance at literary festivals. Demonstrating that engagement with literary festivals can be productively modelled as social, cultural, communicative, and affective, this chapter expands on earlier understandings of literary festival audiences, and asserts the importance of understanding these audiences’ experiences as in many ways cognate with those of other live cultural events. In pulling together an interdisciplinary model for experience, this also paves the way for further studies of cross-media cultural engagement in subsequent chapters.

Bibliography

  1. Abbasi, W. (2013, February 18). Return of the Literature Festival(s). Reason before Passion. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://wasioabbasi.wordpress.com/.
  2. Andersen, K. (2012, July 3). The Downside of Liberty. New York Times. Retrieved September 1, 2016, from http://www.nytimes.com/.
  3. Anderson, B. (1991). Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. (2nd ed.). London: Verso.Google Scholar
  4. Arts Council England. (n.d.). What We Do. Arts Council England. Retrieved February 1, 2016, from http://www.artscouncil.org.uk/what-we-do/.
  5. Australia Council for the Arts. (n.d.). What We Do. Australia Council for the Arts. Retrieved February 1, 2016, from http://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/about/.
  6. Bain, C. (2007). The Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival as a Theatrical Event. (PhD Thesis, University of Maryland). Retrieved August 10, 2013, from http://hdl.handle.net/1903/7144.Google Scholar
  7. Banerjee, N. (2011, January 20). Notes from the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival. Neelanjana Banerjee. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://neelanjanabanerjee.com/.
  8. Barthes, R. (1988 [1967]). The Death of the Author. In D. Lodge (Ed.), Modern Criticism and Theory: A Reader. Harlow: Longman. 166–171.Google Scholar
  9. Bartie, A. (2013). The Edinburgh Festivals: Culture and Society in Post-War Britain. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Bartie, A., & Bell, E. (2012). The International Writers’ Conference Revisited: Edinburgh, 1962. Glasgow: Cargo Publishing.Google Scholar
  11. Bennett, N. (1999). Speaking Volumes: A History of the Cheltenham Festivals of Literature. Stroud: Sutton Publishing.Google Scholar
  12. Berlant, L. (2008). The Female Complaint: The Unfinished Business of Sentimentality in American Culture. Durham; London: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Bourdieu, P. (1986). The Forms of Capital. In J. Richardson (Ed.), Handbook of Theory and Research for the Sociology of Education. New York: Greenwood. 241–258.Google Scholar
  14. Bourdieu, P. (1996). The Rules of Art. (S. Emanuel, Trans.). Cambridge: Polity Press.Google Scholar
  15. Bourdieu, P. (2006). The Field of Cultural Production. In D. Finkelstein & A. McCleery (Eds.), The Book History Reader. London and New York: Routledge. 99–120.Google Scholar
  16. Briggs, C. L. (1986). Learning How to Ask: A Sociolinguistic Appraisal of the Role of the Interview in Social Science Research. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Bronner, E. (2010, May 7). Israelis and Palestinians Hail Writers and the Word, Just Not with One Another. New York Times, p. 8.Google Scholar
  18. Cameron, R. (2009, May 11). Literary Festivals. Lecture in Writers and their Worlds seminar series. Monash University, Clayton, VIC.Google Scholar
  19. Carter, D. (1999). Good Readers and Good Citizens: Literature, Media and the Nation. Australian Literary Studies 19(2), 136–151.Google Scholar
  20. Carter, D., & Ferres, K. (2001). The Public Life of Literature. In T. Bennett & D. Carter (Eds.), Culture in Australia: Policies, Publics and Programs. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 140–160.Google Scholar
  21. Chartier, R. (1992). Laborers and Voyagers: From the Text to the Reader. Diacritics 22(2), 49–61.Google Scholar
  22. Chartier, R. (1995). Popular Appropriations: The Readers and their Books. Forms and Meanings: Texts, Performances and Audiences from Codex to Computer. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. 83–97.Google Scholar
  23. Corse, S. M. (1997). Nationalism and Literature: The Politics of Culture in Canada and the United States. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  24. Counsell, C., & Wolf L. (Eds.). (2005). Performance Analysis: An Introductory Coursebook. London and New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  25. Cremona, V. A. (2007). Introduction—The Festivalising Process. In T. Hauptfleisch, S. Lev-Aladgem, J. Martin, W. Sauter & H. Schoenmakers (Eds.), Festivalising! Theatrical Events, Politics and Culture. Amsterdam: Brill – Rodopi. 5–13.Google Scholar
  26. Denzin, N. K. (2001). The Reflexive Interview and a Performative Social Science. Qualitative Research 1(1), 23–46.Google Scholar
  27. Driscoll, B. (2014). The New Literary Middlebrow: Tastemakers and Reading in the Twenty-First Century. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  28. Driscoll, B. (2015). Sentiment Analysis and the Literary Festival Audience. Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies 29(6), 861–873.Google Scholar
  29. El Chiquito Rico. (2010, August 31). “Antillectualism” and the Question of Israel: Report from a Moribund Festival. El Chiquito Rico: Writing, Ideas, Culture. Retrieved October 6, 2013, from http://elchiquitorico.blogspot.com.au/.
  30. English, J. (2005). The Economy of Prestige: Prizes, Awards, and the Circulation of Cultural Value. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  31. Eversmann, P. (2004). The Experience of the Theatrical Event. In V. A. Cremona, P. Eversmann, H. van Maanen, W. Sauter & J. Tulloch (Eds), Theatrical Events: Borders, Dynamics, Frames. Amsterdam: International Federation for Theatre Research. 139–174.Google Scholar
  32. Falassi, A. (1987). Festival: Definition and Morphology. In A. Falassi (Ed.), Time out of Time: Essays on the Festival. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. 1–10.Google Scholar
  33. Finkelstein, D., & McCleery, A. (2012). Readers and Reading. An Introduction to Book History. (2nd ed.). Hoboken: Taylor and Francis. 101–118.Google Scholar
  34. Fish, S. E. (1976). Interpreting the Variorum. Critical Enquiry 2(3), 465–485.Google Scholar
  35. Florida, R. (2002). The Rise of the Creative Class. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  36. Fuller, D. (2011). Listening to the Readers of “Canada Reads”. The History of Reading. Ed. S. Towheed, R. Crone & K. Halsey. London and New York: Routledge. 411–426.Google Scholar
  37. Fuller, D., & Rehberg Sedo, D. (2012). Mixing It Up: Using Mixed Methods Research to Investigate Contemporary Cultures of Reading. In A. Lang (Ed.), From Codex to Hypertext: Reading at the Turn of the Twenty-first Century. Amherst and Boston: University of Massachusetts Press. 234–251.Google Scholar
  38. Gardiner-Garden, J. (2009, May 7). Commonwealth Arts Policy and Administration. Canberra: Parliament of Australia. Retrieved September 20, 2015, from http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/BN/0809/ArtsPolicy#_Toc229456424.
  39. Giorgi, L. (2011). Between Tradition, Vision and Imagination: The Public Sphere of Literature Festivals. In G. Delanty, L. Giorgi & M. Sassatelli (Eds.), Festivals and the Cultural Public Sphere. London and New York: Routledge. 29–44.Google Scholar
  40. Glass, L. (2004). Authors Inc: Literary Celebrity in the Modern United States, 1880–1980. New York: NYU Press.Google Scholar
  41. Glover, S. (2007). Publishing and the State. In D. Carter & A. Galligan (Eds.), Making Books. St Lucia: University of Queensland Press. 81–95.Google Scholar
  42. Greco, A. M., Rodríguez, C. E., & Wharton, R. M. (2007). The Culture and Commerce of Publishing in the 21st Century. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  43. Gutjahr, P. C. (2011). No Longer Left Behind: Amazon.com, Reader-Response, and the Changing Fortunes of the Christian Novel in America. In S. Towheed, R. Crone & K. Halsey (Eds.), The History of Reading. London and New York: Routledge. 389–401.Google Scholar
  44. Habermas, J. (1989 [1962]). The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere. (T. Burger & F. Lawrence, Trans.). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  45. Habermas, J. (1992). Further Reflections on the Public Sphere. In C. Calhoun (Ed.), Habermas and the Public Sphere. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. 421–461.Google Scholar
  46. Hall, S. (2008 [1980]). Encoding, Decoding. In M. Ryan, (Ed.), Cultural Studies: An Anthology. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing. 907–916.Google Scholar
  47. Hamilton, C., & Seale, K. (2014). Great Expectations—Making a City of Literature. Meanjin 73(1), 142–151.Google Scholar
  48. Hesmondhalgh, D. (2008). Cultural and Creative Industries. In T. Bennett & J. Frow (Eds.), The SAGE Handbook of Cultural Analysis. London: Sage Publications. 552–569.Google Scholar
  49. Hiller, H. H., & DiLuzio, L. (2004). The Interviewee and the Research Interview: Analyzing a Neglected Dimension in Research. Canadian Review of Sociology and Anthropology 41(1), 1–26.Google Scholar
  50. ireckonthat. (2013, September 22). Melbourne Writers Festival 2013 – What I Saw. ireckonthat. Retrieved October 6, 2013, from http://ireckonthat.wordpress.com/.Google Scholar
  51. Iser, W. (2011 [1972]). The Reading Process: A Phenomenological Approach. In S. Towheed, R. Crone & K. Halsey (Eds.), The History of Reading. London and New York: Routledge. 80–92.Google Scholar
  52. Jamieson, K. (2004). Edinburgh: The Festival Gaze and its Boundaries. Space and Culture 7, 64–75.Google Scholar
  53. Johanson, K., & Freeman, R. (2012). The Reader as Audience: The Appeal of the Writers’ Festival to the Contemporary Audience. Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies 26(2), 303–314.Google Scholar
  54. Jones, E. D. (1981). A History of the Southern Literary Festival. (PhD Thesis, University of Mississippi).Google Scholar
  55. Kooda, M. (2013, October 17). The Lady Who Cried at the Galle Literary Festival. iSrilankan. Retrieved October 24, 2013, from http://isrilankan.com/the-lady-who-cried-at-the-galle-literary-festival/.
  56. Kubuitsile, L. (2012, September 28). The Storymoja Hay Festival. The Voice: It’s All Write. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://www.thevoicebw.com/.
  57. Lahire, B., & Jones, M. (2015). Literature is Not Just a Battlefield. New Literary History 46(3), 387–407.Google Scholar
  58. Landry, C. (2000). The Creative City: A Toolkit for Urban Innovators. London: Earthscan.Google Scholar
  59. Landy, J. (2012). How to Do Things with Fictions. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  60. Leach, R. (2013). Theatre Studies: The Basics. (2nd ed.). London and New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  61. Lurie, C. (2004). Festival, Inc. Australian Author 36(2), 8–12.Google Scholar
  62. Martin, N. C. (2013, March 21). Giving Tennessee a Second Chance. Room 220. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://press-street.com/.
  63. McGuigan, J. (2005). The Cultural Public Sphere. European Journal of Cultural Studies 8(4), 427–443.Google Scholar
  64. Meehan, M. (2005). The Word Made Flesh: Festival, Carnality and Literary Consumption. TEXT: Journal of the Australian Association of Writing, Oct. 2005. Retrieved September 3, 2013, from http://pandora.nla.gov.au/tep/10069.
  65. Melbourne Writers Festival. (2013). Workshop: Get Blogging. Melbourne Writers Festival. Retrieved October 30, 2013, from http://www.tickets.mwf.com.au/session2_mwf.asp?sn=Workshop%3A+Get+Blogging&s=1709.
  66. Mesnil, M. (1987). Place and Time in the Carnivalesque Festival. In A. Falassi (Ed.), Time out of Time: Essays on the Festival. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press. 184–196.Google Scholar
  67. Miller, T., & Yúdice, G. (2002). Cultural Policy. London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  68. Milz, S. (2007). Canadian Cultural Policy-Making at a Time of Neoliberal Globalization. English Studies in Canada 33(1–2), 85–107.Google Scholar
  69. Moran, J. (2000). Star Authors: Literary Celebrity in America. London: Pluto Press.Google Scholar
  70. MummyBarrow. (2013, October 7). Henley Literary Festival 2013. Mummy Barrow. Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://www.mummybarrow.com/.
  71. Murray, S., & Weber, M. (2017). “Live and Local”?: The Significance of Digital Media for Writers’ Festivals. Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies 23(1), 61–78.Google Scholar
  72. Nalder, T. (2011, September 5). Melbourne Writers Festival 2011—Literary Luvvies’ Heaven. Terry’s Blog. Retrieved October 6, 2013, from http://tnalder.blogspot.com.au/.
  73. National Endowment for the Arts. (n.d.). About the NEA. National Endowment for the Arts. Retrieved February 2, 2016, from https://www.arts.gov/about-nea.
  74. Nespor, J., & Barber, L. (1995). Audience and the Politics of Narrative. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education 8(1), 49–62.Google Scholar
  75. O’Connor, J. (2011a). The Cultural and Creative Industries: A Critical History. Ekonomiaz 78(3), 24–45.Google Scholar
  76. O’Connor, J. (2011b). Arts and Creative Industries. Surry Hills: Australia Council for the Arts. Retrieved April 15, 2014, from http://www.australiacouncil.gov.au/.
  77. Ommundsen, W. (2000). The Circus Is in Town: Literary Festivals and the Mapping of Cultural Heritage. In F. de Groen & K. Stewart (Eds.), Australian Writing and the City. Sydney: Association for the Study of Australian Literature. 173–179. Retrieved September 1, 2013, from http://www.nla.gov.au/openpublish/index.php/jasal/article/viewFile/2759/3170.
  78. Ommundsen, W. (2009). Literary Festivals and Cultural Consumption. Australian Literary Studies 24(1), 19–34.Google Scholar
  79. O’Shaughnessy, N. (2004). Politics and Propaganda: Weapons of Mass Seduction. Manchester: Manchester University Press.Google Scholar
  80. Park, D. (2013, September 24). Wakefield Literary Festival: Telling Tales—Susanna Meese. A Little Knowledge Is … a Glorious Thing! Retrieved October 25, 2013, from http://danielpark99.wordpress.com/.
  81. Patrick. (2013, October 13). Speaking Engagement Review: Dan Savage Jewish Literary Festival. Proud to Be Here. Retrieved October 24, 2013, from http://proud2bhere.wordpress.com/.
  82. Quinn, B. (2005). Arts Festivals and the City. Urban Studies 42(5–6), 927–943.Google Scholar
  83. Radbourne, J., Johanson, K., Glow, H., & White, T. (2009). The Audience Experience: Measuring Quality in the Performing Arts. International Journal of Arts Management 11(3), 16–29.Google Scholar
  84. Radway, J. (1984). Reading the Romance: Women, Patriarchy, and Popular Literature. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press.Google Scholar
  85. Reason, M. (2004). Theatre Audiences and Perceptions of “Liveness” in Performance. Particip@tions 1(2), Retrieved October 28, 2013, from http://www.participations.org/.
  86. Rose, J. (2002). The Intellectual Life of the British Working Classes. New Haven and London: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  87. Rose, J. (2006). Rereading the English Common Reader: A Preface to a History of Audiences. In D. Finkelstein & A. McCleery (Eds.), The Book History Reader. (2nd ed.). London and New York: Routledge. 424–439.Google Scholar
  88. Ross, K., & Nightingale, V. (2003). Media and Audiences: New Perspectives. Maidenhead: Open University Press.Google Scholar
  89. Ruddock, A. (2006). Understanding Audiences: Theory and Method. London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  90. Ruddock, A. (2007). Investigating Audiences. London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  91. Saro, A. (2009). Theatrical Expectations and Experiences in Estonia. Nordic Theatre Studies 21, 18–27.Google Scholar
  92. Saunders, J. (2014). Hay: Landscape, Literature and a Town of Books. Bridgend, Wales: Seren.Google Scholar
  93. Sauter, W. (2007). The Values of a Festival—The Swedish Theatre Biennale. In T. Hauptfleisch, S. Lev-Aladgem, J. Martin, W. Sauter & H. Schoenmakers (Eds.), Festivalising! Theatrical Events, Politics and Culture. Amsterdam: Brill – Rodopi. 201–218.Google Scholar
  94. Schoenmakers, H. (2009). I am the Other (Sometimes). The Dynamics of Involvement Processes during the Reception of Theatrical Events. Nordic Theatre Studies 21, 7–18.Google Scholar
  95. Seale, C., & Silverman, D. (1997). Ensuring Rigour in Qualitative Research. European Journal of Public Health 7, 379–384.Google Scholar
  96. Seffrin, G. (2005). The Cosmopolitan Festival. In D. Ellison & I. Woodward (Eds.), Sites of Cosmopolitan: Citizenship, Aesthetics, Culture. Brisbane: Centre for Public Culture and Ideas, Griffith University. 22–32.Google Scholar
  97. Sorensen, R. (2010, August 10). Byron’s Writers Festival Attracts the Good, the Bad and the Ugly. The Australian, p. 17.Google Scholar
  98. Sorensen, R. (2013, August 2). Tome Zones in Flux: Why Writers Festivals Are Making Themselves at Home in the Regions. The Australian, p. 15.Google Scholar
  99. Squires, C. (2007). Marketing Literature: The Making of Contemporary Writing in Britain. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  100. Starke, R. (2000). A Festival of Writers: Adelaide Writers’ Week 1960–2000. (PhD Thesis, Flinders University).Google Scholar
  101. Stewart, C. (2009). The Culture of Contemporary Writers’ Festivals. (PhD Thesis, Queensland University of Technology). Retrieved April 8, 2013, from http://eprints.qut.edu.au/31241/.Google Scholar
  102. Stewart, C. (2010). We Call upon the Author to Explain: Theorising Writers’ Festivals as Sites of Contemporary Public Culture. Journal of the Association for the Study of Australian Literature. Retrieved August 8, 2013, from http://www.nla.gov.au/openpublish/index.php/jasal/article/view/1492/2085.
  103. Stewart, C. (2013). The Rise and Rise of Writers’ Festivals. In G. Harper (Ed.), A Companion to Creative Writing. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons. 263–277.Google Scholar
  104. Sydney Writers’ Festival. (2013). Angela Meyer: Blogging for Beginners. Sydney Writers’ Festival. Retrieved October 30, 2013, from http://www.swf.org.au/component/option,com_events/Itemid,124/agid,3762/task,view_detail/.Google Scholar
  105. Sysomos. (2010, June). Inside Blog Demographics. Sysomos. Retrieved November 7, 2013, from http://www.sysomos.com/reports/bloggers/.
  106. The Slammer. (2009, May 24). Hay Festival (Part One). The Slammer. Retrieved October 6, 2013, from http://slammerbooks.wordpress.com/.
  107. Towheed, S., Crone, R., & Halsey, K. (Eds.). (2011). The History of Reading. London and New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  108. van Enk, A. A. (2009). The Shaping Effects of the Conversational Interview: An Examination Using Bakhtin’s Theory of Genre. Qualitative Inquiry 15(7), 1265–1286.Google Scholar
  109. Warner, M. (2002). Publics and Counterpublics. Public Culture 14(1), 49–90.Google Scholar
  110. Waterman, S. (1998). Carnivals for Elites? The Cultural Politics of Arts Festivals. Progress in Human Geography 22(1), 54–74.Google Scholar
  111. York, L. (2007). Literary Celebrity in Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Millicent Weber
    • 1
  1. 1.Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia

Personalised recommendations