For centuries, the bound volume held an esteemed and seemingly inv

incible place in our culture. In the digital age, however, nothing about the status of books, or even their survival as physical objects, is certain. How should we understand the present moment, suspended between the print culture of old and the digital future? What lessons might the past hold for thinking about current concerns and options? Does digitization herald the end of the book or a new beginning (or neither)?

In October 2015, the White Rose Debating the Book programme will connect the large public in and around Leeds, Sheffield and York interested in these questions with the outstanding scholars and innovators best placed to shape informed, imaginative discussion. At the centerpiece of the programme will be a public debate on the future of the book, details of which can be found below


The debate – The Future of the Book

Thursday 8th October 2015

The Great Hall, University of Leeds

We are delighted to welcome our speakers

Lord Melvyn Bragg (chair): Leeds Chancellor, renowned arts broadcaster, author of Twelve Books that Changed the World.

James Daunt Managing Director of Waterstones.

Linda Grant: Orange Prize-winning author of I Murdered My Library; a graduate of York, which recently awarded her an honorary doctorate.

Dr Bridgette Wessels (Sheffield): a leading expert in the sociology of digital communication in the arts and the public sphere.

Prof. Brian Cummings (York): early modernist historian of the book, whose 2012 Clarendon Lectures were on “bibliophobia.”

Prof. Jane Taylor (Leeds): South African novelist, playwright and scholar, awarded the Olive Schreiner Prize for her fiction.


Get your tickets here