Matthew Kirschenbaum’s “Bitstreams: The Future of Digital Literary Heritage”

Philadelphia, PA       The Penn Libraries is proud to announce that Matthew Kirschenbaum will deliver the 2016 A.S.W. Rosenbach Lectures, “Bitstreams: The Future of Digital Literary Heritage” on March 14th, 15th, and 17th in the Class of 1978 Pavilion in the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books, and Manuscripts which is located on the sixth floor of Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center. Kirschenbaum, Associate Professor of English and Associate Director of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities, describes the lectures as an assessment of the future of literary heritage—archives, public memory, and scholarship in the face of the ubiquity of computers as instruments of composition, editing, and book design; the distribution of books through multiple media formats and platforms; the profusion of the literary conversation online; and the hybridity of the contemporary media archive.

Kirschenbaum has written and collaborated in the publishing of four books and often speaks and writes on the topics of Digital Humanities and New Media. His work has received coverage in The Atlantic, Slate, The New York Times, The Guardian, NPR, Wired, Boing Boing, Slashdot, and The Chronicle of Higher Education.

The Rosenbach Lectures are the longest continuing series of bibliographic lectureships in the United States. The series begain in 1931, with Christopher Morley as the first fellow. Over the years, lecture topics have included fifteenth-century printing, the relationships between print and manuscript, papermaking, book illustration, American reading and publishing, and medical and scientific texts. Recent lecturers have included Robert Darnton, Anthony Grafton, Peter Stallybrass, David D. Hall, Paul Saenger, Michael Warner, Elizabeth L. Eisenstien, Alberto Manguel, Paul Needham, and, most recently, William Zachs.

All of the 2016 A.S.W. Rosenbach Lectures will begin at 5:30pm and are free and open to the public. However, we do request that you send in an RSVP by following this link:


About the Penn Libraries

The Penn Libraries serve the world-class faculty and students of Penn’s 12 schools. The Libraries’ collections comprise more than 7 million volumes, over 100,000 journals, some 2 million digitized images, and extraordinary rare and unique materials that document the intellectual and cultural experience of ancient and modern civilizations. Through our collaborative relationships, we supplement Penn’s great local collections with physical access to the Center for Research Libraries (approximately 5 million items), the combined holdings of the Ivies (more than 70 million volumes), and exclusive electronic access to some 2 million public domain titles in the HathiTrust. Today, the Libraries play an instrumental role in developing new technologies for information discovery and dissemination and are noted for groundbreaking work in digital library design. To learn more about the Penn Libraries, visit