Ballad Colloquium 2010-2011

Presentations


Carl Stahmer and Megan Palmer Browne, "The Rootmass of the Woodblock: Towards a Rhizomatic Image Cataloguing System"
4 November 2011, 2:00-3:00pm, SH 2510 (EMC)

A video of the talk is available here.

The English Broadside Ballad Archive (EBBA) has long been working to catalogue its many fascinating woodcut illustrations. Traditional cataloguing methods, though useful today and, indeed, necessary in traditional paper-based scholarship, are beginning to seem insufficient to the needs and capabilities of our web-based archive. This talk presents our ongoing development of more rhizomatic cataloguing standards (that is, multiple and root-based rather than hierarchical). It also discusses a project on which we are hoping to embark: developing visual-recognition software to digitally match images and parts of images which will be linked to rich, rhizomatic cataloguing data, giving end users an experience that is both rigorous in a scholarly sense and satisfying in a technological one.

Bill Warner, "English Broadside Ballads and The Beggar’s Opera of John Gay: A Discussion on their Relationship"
3 June 2011, 12:00-1:00pm, SH 2510 (EMC)

A powerpoint presentation from this presentation is available here.

The Beggar's Opera premiered at the Lincoln’s Inn Fields Theatre on 29 January 1728 and ran for 62 consecutive performances, the longest run in theater history up to that time. Most theater historians describe The Beggar’s Opera as the first musical comedy. Critical to its success was the innovated way with which Gay mixed high and low, remediating Italian opera by replacing its formal musical song arias with the English ballads that were so popular with English audiences. In this seminar, I’ll present to UCSB ballad experts a) the early English versions of some ballads behind Gay’s project; b) the lyrics that Gay writes for those familiar ballad tunes; and, c) and clips from the best modern performance of The Beggar’s Opera. I hope our discussion illuminates the relation between Gay’s art and the popular sources for his songs.

Participants are asked to read The Beggar's Opera in advance of the talk; the Penguin edition edited by Bryan Loughrey and T. O. Treadwell and the online edition from the University of Virginia are recommended.

Of the 69 airs in The Beggar's Opera, 41 were derived from the tunes of ballad tunes he found in the influential 6 volume collection of Thomas D’Urfey, Wit and Mirth; or, Pills to Purge Melancholy (Jacob Tonson, 1719-1720). Here are 50 pages of Volume I of that collection. This excerpt has an interesting introduction and includes enough ballads to show you how they have been edited.

The talk will be preceded by a screening of Roger Daltry's version of The Beggar's Opera beginning at 9:30am in the EMC.

Megan Palmer Browne, "The Genealogy of an Artichoke (Lady): Ownership and Transmission of Seventeenth-Century Broadside Ballad Woodcuts"
20 May 2011, 1:00-2:00pm, SH 2510 (EMC)

A fascinating feature of early modern broadside ballads is their lively woodcut impressions. Focusing on the image we at the English Broadside Ballad Archive affectionately call "the Artichoke Lady," this talk traces the often-labyrinthine paths of particular blocks--blocks which have long since disappeared or been destroyed. Tracing these blocks has not previously been attempted because of difficulties in access, but it is now possible through EBBA's databases and catalogues, which, when cross-referenced with one another, can give us a new and exciting glimpse into the world and practices of early modern printers in London.

Heather Blurton, "The Anglo-Norman 'ballad' of Hugh of Lincoln"
29 April 2011, 12:00-1:00pm, SH 2635

The Anglo-Norman ballad of Hugh of Lincoln most often appears in scholarship when it is being discredited as a source or an analogue for Chaucer's "The Prioress's Tale." This talk will suggest that it is not a ballad, and that its attribution as "ballad" is holding back the critical debate on this text. But how then to explain the related 18th century ballad "Sir Hugh and the Jew's Daughter"?

E. Heckendorn Cook, "'Para-Balladry,' or When is a Ballad not a Ballad? Case-studies from the 1720s" 8 February 2011, 4:00-5:30pm, SH 2617

Readings related to E. Cook's talk will be available in the EMC (SH 2510) by Monday, February 7 (on the bookcase to the left as you face it), and will also be available at the colloquium.

Paxton Hehmeyer, "Selling Shores Wife: Authors in the Market in Late Elizabethan England," 21 January 2011, 12:00-1:00pm, SH 2510 (Early Modern Center)

This presentation will explore three poetic versions of the Jane Shore legend published simultaneously by the printer John Wolf in 1593 (a "mirror" poem, a new Ovidian version by Anthony Chute, and a ballad by Thomas Deloney). It argues that in publishing these three different versions of the Shore story, Wolf was engaged in a shrewd marketing strategy that sought to create or reconstruct his reading and purchasing public. This paper will not only shed light on the possible reception of ballads in their relationship to other developing notions of literature, but it will also challenge prevailing notions of authorship in the sixteenth century by introducing the important figure of the printer, crafting and nurturing poetic persona for his own profitable reasons.

Judith Paltin, "Rebellious Balladry: The Political Optimism of 'Come all ye,'" 19 November 2010, 12:00-1:30 pm, SH2617

We will sample ballads from Ireland and the Scottish border (and a couple about outlaws and transport to Australia) that roughly outline a political history of resistance via the ballad--including famous rising/rebellion ones, naturally, but also anti-war and anti-recruiting songs, anti-landlord/land reform perorations and the interestingly ambiguous IRA-associated ballads like "Patriot Game" that seem to critique as much as to support the "cause". We will range from the modern back as far as "Follow me up to Carlow," a bloody (no pun intended) Elizabethan example. Please expect some group participation!

Eric Nebeker, "The Politics of Cock Lorell in Jonson's The Gypsies Metamorphos'd and Beyond," 22 October 2010, 12:00-1:30 pm, SH2617

This paper looks at the very popular ballad, "The Song of Cock Lorell," in Jonson's masque, and investigates the political implications of that song's long life in both manuscript and print.


Meetings

EBBA Workflow Meetings, Spring 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led weekly conference-call meetings on Tuesdays at 2pm with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Shannon Meyer and Charlotte Becker.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 15 March 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Manager Charlotte Becker to discuss the installation of the new XBallad program, changes to the EBBA keywords and keyword descriptions, and the addition of multiple-keyword search functionality.

EBBA Long-Term Planning Meeting and NEH Program Officer Visit, 21-23 February, 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led a three-day series of meetings with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer. Topics of discussion included changes to the database to accommodate ballad collections not organized by volume (e.g. Euing and Huntington), modifications to the citation page format, cataloging ballads printed on one sheet but separated in collection, workflow for the Spring 2011 quarter, and the new "XBallad" interface.

On the morning of February 23, the team hosted Stefanie Walker, NEH Program Officer, who was also meeting with UCSB's Office of Research. The meeting with Ms. Walker included demonstration of EBBA's work with catalog keywording and color image manipulation, as well as discussion of how EBBA's continuing work may fit with different NEH grant opportunities.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 8 February 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Manager Charlotte Becker to discuss the agenda for Carl's upcoming trip to Santa Barbara as well as NEH Program Officer Stefanie Walker's visit. The team also reviewed the music team's progress in cross-checking Pepys, Roxburghe, and Euing recordings.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 1 February 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer. Topics of discussion included revisions to the Standard Tune Title drop-down menu, management of Roxburghe tune recordings, expanding the Basic Search query to include information about authors and printer/publishers, and improvements to the Advanced Search page.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 25 January 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Manager Charlotte Becker to begin planning the presentation that the EBBA team will give at the 2011 Early Modern Center Winter Conference, and to discuss practices for dealing with exceptional album facsimiles (e.g. Roxburghe Volume 4).

EBBA Cataloging Team Meetings, 19 January 2011-9 March 2011

Project Manager Charlotte Becker led a series of meetings with Cataloging Team members Danielle Davey, Michael Grafals, Shannon Meyer and Bethany Wong to write short descriptions of each cataloging keyword for inclusion on the Cataloging Methodology page and advanced search function on the EBBA site.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 11 January 2011

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer to decide on additions and updates to cataloging keywords, and to discuss ballad facsimile image improvements and the new woodcut impression cataloging system.

Undergraduate Intern/RA Meeting, 1 December 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton, Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer had a luncheon meeting with the Fall 2010 undergraduate interns and RAs to discuss final tasks for the end of the quarter and to thank the undergraduate team for their outstanding work.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 30 November 2010

Assistant Director Eric Nebeker led a conference-call meeting with Associate Director Carl Stahmer and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer. Discussion items included converting workflow management to a Mantis system (this will necessitate training sessions for all workers beginning in January), more issues with folded ballads in Roxburghe albums, and the possibility of adding a "race/ethnicity" keyword to the cataloging database.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 23 November 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Manager Charlotte Becker to discuss possibilities for improving ballad facsimile image quality, options for dealing with unusually folded ballads in Roxburghe album facsimiles, and cataloging for ballads with two ballads on a single sheet. The group also resumed discussion about problems with search queries not picking up all catalog entries.

Undergraduate Intern/RA Meeting, 17 November 2010

Assistant Director Eric Nebeker and Project Manager Charlotte Becker met with the Fall 2010 undergraduate interns and research assistants to discuss workflow for the remaining weeks of the quarter and also familiarized the undergraduates with changes in woodcuts from sixteenth- to seventeenth-century ballads.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 16 November 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer to discuss image quality issues for recently mounted Roxburghe ballad facsimiles, issues with the general search on the EBBA site, and display of British Library logo and license information with relevant images.

Undergraduate Intern/RA Meeting, 10 November 2010

Assistant Director Eric Nebeker and Project Manager Charlotte Becker met with the Fall 2010 undergraduate interns and research assistants to train them on color image processing for album facsimiles.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 9 November 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Manager Charlotte Becker to discuss browser compatibility issues for different aspects of the EBBA site, updating the cataloging interface to record black- and white-letter ballads, updating the keyword such function in the user interface, and a possible UK collaboration.

EBBA Workflow Meeting, 2 November 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer to discuss how to display album facsimiles on the site (including the placement of library logos and license information), and also to refine the workflow for the immediate future.

Undergraduate Intern/RA Meeting, 27 October 2010

Assistant Director Eric Nebeker and Project Manager Charlotte Becker met with the Fall 2010 undergraduate interns and research assistants to discuss procedures for image association in the database and editing facsimile transcriptions.

EBBA Database/Image Delivery Workflow Meeting, 22 October 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton led a conference-call meeting with Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, Associate Director Carl Stahmer, and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer to discuss the delivery of color images for the Roxburghe collection, complex text search capabilities, and repairs to the database and administrative interface.

Undergraduate Intern/RA Meeting, 13 October 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton, Assistant Director Eric Nebeker, and Project Manager Charlotte Becker met with the Fall 2010 undergraduate interns and research assistants to discuss guidelines for making facsimile transcriptions, particularly dealing with handwriting on ballads. Eric Nebeker also discussed the history of black-letter and white-letter type.

EBBA Database/Image Delivery Workflow Meeting, 8 October 2010

Director Patricia Fumerton led a two-hour conference call with Associate Director Carl Stahmer, EBBA digital and image specialist, to discuss delivery of completed Roxburghe images and woodcut cataloguing as well as necessary database changes for delivery of other completed work, such as Roxburghe recordings; also present were Assistant Director Eric Nebeker and Project Manager Charlotte Becker.

EBBA Transcription, Image, Tune, & Workflow Meeting, 5 October 2010

Assistant Director Eric Nebeker conducted a three-hour meeting with Director Patricia Fumerton and Project Managers Charlotte Becker and Shannon Meyer on current project workflow, transcription rules (especially the problem of how to address handwriting on ballads in our transcriptions), music recordings, and woodcut as well as ballad image issues.