In the Spring of 2021, ESPRit organises a series of online seminars in collaboration with ETMIET/KENI, Panteion University, Athens: Crossover influences and local identities of the popular illustrated periodicals of the 19th and twentieth centuries

 The second session of the series was held on 16 April from  3-4PM CET.

Chair: Sophie Oliver (Liverpool University)


1. Júlia Fazekas (ELTE University, Budapest), “Popularity of Hungarian and European fashion magazines in the 1840s”

The Hungarian fashion magazines gained notable popularity in the 1840s. They were modelled after other European magazines and previous Hungarian periodicals. These magazines aimed to gain a wide readership and wanted to shape the literary sphere, publish influential works, and facilitate Hungarian education and reading through them. They mainly focused on literature, and during this period they were the most significant literary source. They contained a mixture of texts, not just literary works – they were concerned with entertainment, gossip, local and foreign news (even political content), and fashion. I believe that this thematical variety and the relation between different elements is particularly interesting in this research. In my presentation I want to look at how these fashion magazines gained popularity in Hungary and Europe. My main question is how this type of periodical can be examined from the perspective of popularity, and how their position could vary in different countries.

Watch the recording of this lecture here:

2. Charlotte Lauder (AHRC-funded PhD student, University of Strathclyde and National Library of Scotland), “Pithy people: the People’s Friend, a national magazine for Scotland”

The People’s Friend was established in 1869 in Dundee, Scotland, as a magazine for Scottish people, and is still published from that city today. A weekly illustrated penny magazine, the People’s Friend set out in 1869 to ‘encourage the literary talent which we know exists among the people’ by publishing ‘Scotch stories, poetry, and other articles, written by Scotchmen’. By 1905, the People’s Friend had created popular magazine culture in Scotland and came to define Scottish literature for the masses. How did it do this? How did a provincial literary magazine managed to sell an average of 212,600 copies per week by 1890? This presentation explores how the People’s Friend became Scotland’s most popular penny weekly magazine. It assesses the landscape of popular literature in late-nineteenth and early-twentieth century Scotland and the importance of magazine culture within it.

Watch the recording of this lecture here:

In the Spring of 2021, ESPRit organises a series of online seminars in collaboration with ETMIET/KENI, Panteion University, Athens: Crossover influences and local identities of the popular illustrated periodicals of the 19th and twentieth centuries


The third session of the series will be held on 14 May from  3-4PM CET

Chair: Andrés Mario Zervigón (Rutgers University)


1. Patrick Roessler (University of Erfurt), “From Simplicissimus to Simplicus and Der Simpl. Satire magazines between Nazi gleichschaltung and exile, 1934-35”

In 1934 and 1935, the seventy-three issues of the German-language satirical magazine Simplicus (later renamed Der Simpl) were published in exile in Prague. The editors, a team of German emigrants and Czech artists, primarily attacked the Nazi regime in the neighboring country, but their caricatures, poems, and essays criticizing the period were controversial in the exile community itself. The presentation will elaborate on the content of the magazine with a focus on its illustrators, displaying a selection of notable contributions. Moreover, it will focus on the editorial team and the quarrels between Simplicissimus founder Thomas Theodor Heine and the group of exiles in the Czech capital. Documents from the time suggest that within the exiles united by the fight against Nazi Germany, political positions were often diverse, leading to conflicts which weakened the resistance movement.  

2. Mary Ikoniadou (University of Central Lancashire), “Refugee publishing. The case study of the Greek political refugees in East Germany. Imaginings and aesthetics of repatriation amidst Cold War borders”

The presentation will consider publishing as a site in which refugee populations can challenge official narratives of nationhood while simultaneously claim belonging to a 'homeland' and a national body from which they have been displaced. Through the case study of Pyrsos illustrated magazine published in East Germany in the 1960s by Greek political refugees of the Civil War, the presentation will argue that visual, and material analysis can offer an in-depth understanding of the complexity of the political refugees' claims. It will demonstrate that the juxtaposition of images and texts in the design of the magazine alongside its editorial and distribution strategies challenged the position of its readers: it invited particular ways of reading and knowing that embodied political experiences and affective responses whilst incited imagined national cultural identities. 

The new PeLiAS joint seminar (Periodicals Literature Arts Sciences) will study art, literature and science periodicals as cultural mediators from the 18th to the first half of the 20th century. The seminar considers periodicals as social, material and entrepreneurial constructions, involving multiple actors: writers, artists, typographers, engravers, printers, publishers or readers in relation with various socio-professional groups (art and literature circles, science groups, academics, theatres, galleries, publishing houses, etc.). The seminar adopts a twofold approach: periodicals are analysed both as a communication medium pertaining to print culture and as a multidisciplinary cultural object. The notion of mediator allows for highlighting the circulation of ideas, texts, images and writers. Periodicals are approached in terms of «networks»: dialogues are established between diverse periodicals beyond the traditional split categories opposing the big vs. the small press, reviews vs. books, or art and literature journals on one hand vs. scientific journals on the other. Periodicals are also studied in their outreach and popularizing dimension, both on a literary and scientific level, and in their relationship to the book and various audiences.

The new joint seminar prolongs the panel «Agencies of Scientific Periodicals» chaired by Hélène Gispert at the 7th ESPRit international conference Periodicals In-Between : Periodicals in the Ecology of Visual and Print Culture, organised by Evanghelia Stead in Paris (26-29 June 2018). It looks back at the approaches developed in France by Evanghelia Stead and Hélène Védrine on art and literature periodicals (L'Europe des revues, 2008, and L'Europe des revues, II, 2018) and by Hélène Gispert on scientific and technical periodicals (GHDSO-EST group).

Les périodiques comme médiateurs culturels (Littérature Arts Sciences)

Le nouveau séminaire PéLiAS (riodiques Littérature Arts Sciences) se propose d’étudier les périodiques artistiques, littéraires et scientifiques du 18e siècle à la première moitié du 20e siècle en tant que médiateurs culturels. Il s’agit d’analyser les périodiques en tant que constructions sociales, matérielles et entrepreneuriales, qui font intervenir de multiples acteurs : écrivains, artistes, typographes, graveurs, imprimeurs, éditeurs, ou lecteurs, etc., et touchent des milieux socio-professionnels variés (milieux artistiques et littéraires, scientifiques, universitaires, théâtres, galeries, maisons d’édition, etc.). L’approche adoptée est double : les périodiques sont interrogés en tant que support de communication appartenant à la culture de l’imprimé et en tant qu’objet culturel pluridisciplinaire. La notion de médiateur permet d’insister sur la circulation des idées, des textes, des images et des rédacteurs. Les périodiques sont pensés en terme de « réseau » : un dialogue s’établit entre différents périodiques au-delà des catégorisations et partages traditionnels qui opposent grande et petite presse, revues et livres, revues artistiques et littéraires et revues scientifiques. Les périodiques sont aussi étudiés dans leur dimension de vulgarisation, tant au niveau littéraire que scientifique, et dans leur rapport au livre et aux différents publics.

Ce nouveau séminaire collaboratif prolonge le panel « Action des périodiques scientifiques » présidé par Hélène Gispert au 7e colloque international d’ESPRit Les Périodiques comme médiateurs. Les périodiques dans l’écosystème de la culture imprimée et visuelle, organisé par Evanghelia Stead à Paris (26-29 juin 2018). Il s’appuie sur les approches élaborées en France d’une part par Evanghelia Stead et Hélène Védrine sur les périodiques d’art et de littérature (L’Europe des revues, 2008, et L’Europe des revues, II, 2018), de l’autre par Hélène Gispert sur les périodiques scientifiques et techniques (groupe GHDSO-EST).


Friday 22 March 2019 / Vendredi 22 mars 2019, Université Paris-Sorbonne, 16h-19h, salle Paul Hazard

 Periodicals and Publishing / Périodique et édition

Yoan Vérilhac (Université de Nîmes, RIRRA 21, Montpellier III) et Caroline Ehrhardt (Université Paris-8, IDHES)

Friday 24 May 2019 / Vendredi 24 mai 2019, Université Paris-Sorbonne, 16h-19h, salle Paul Hazard

 Periodicals and Images / Périodique et image

Valérie Stiénon (Université Paris 13, Pleiade) et Delphine Benoît (Université Paris Sud, GHDSO)

Friday 11 October 2019 / Vendredi 11 octobre 2019, Université Paris-Sorbonne, 16h-19h, salle Paul Hazard 

Periodicals and Translation / Périodique et traduction

Francis Mus (Université de Liège, CIRTI) et Patrice Bret (Centre Alexandre Koyré, Paris, sous réserve)

Friday 15 November 2019 / Vendredi 15 novembre 2019, Université Paris-Sorbonne, 16h-19h, salle Paul Hazard

Periodicals and Vulgarisation / Périodique et vulgarisation

Mark Morrisson (Pennsylvania State University) et Jonathan R. Topham (Leeds University, sous réserve)

Organizers / Organisateurs:

Hélène Védrine (Paris-Sorbonne, CELLF 19-21)

Norbert Verdier (Paris-Sud, EST-GHDSO)

Alexia Kalantzis (Versailles Saint-Quentin, CHCSC)

Scientific Committee / Comité scientifique:

Evanghelia Stead (UVSQ, CHCSC & IUF)

Hélène Gispert (Paris-Sudy, EST-GHDSO)

Viera Rebolledo Dhuin (UVSQ, CHCSC)

Hélène Védrine (Paris-Sorbonne, CELLF 19-21)

Norbert Verdier (Paris-Sud, EST-GHDSO)

Alexia Kalantzis (UVSQ, CHCSC)

Label : MSH Paris Saclay & CELLF 19-21


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8-9 July 2020, University of Salford, MediaCityUK

Deadline for 400-word abstracts: 16 December 2019 
In 1702 Elizabeth Mallett founded the Daily Courant at her modest bookshop on Fleet Street in London. Two centuries later, the street had become the spatial nerve centre for a range of local, national and international networks of communication that were replicated on “newspaper rows” across the globe. As media influence grew, so too did the size and scale of its buildings, with American publisher Joseph Pulitzer contending that ‘a newspaper plant…should be something to be gaped at.’ Structures such as Pulitzer’s own New York World building, the striking neo-gothic spires of the Chicago Tribune tower, and the sleek art-deco exteriors of the Daily Express buildings in London and Manchester offered their own expressions of media power, modernity, and the aesthetics of mass communication, providing what Aurora Wallace describes as a “definable shape…a hook on which to hang some news about the media itself.”
This conference, located at the heart of MediaCityUK, invites contributions which explore the intersections between media culture, architecture, and the built environment. We are interested in the relationship between media content and media space, and the ways in which this relationship has changed over time. What would press barons such as Pulitzer, who saw their buildings as “the central and highest point(s) of New World Civilization”, have made of Facebook’s Menlo Park Campus; an arguably more impressive yet radically different vision of media power, sophistication, and influence? How might publishers such as Lord Beaverbrook, the ‘first baron of Fleet Street’, have reacted to its decline and dispersal during the latter decades of the twentieth century? More broadly, how have media buildings informed and given form to a range of sociopolitical, cultural and ideological constructs, becoming a “delivery mechanism” for ideas about objectivity, authority and identity? And what can the past and future of media architecture tell us about the changing nature of media production, distribution and consumption in the twenty-first century?

Potential topics and case studies could include:
•    The history and impact of the “newspaper row” (Fleet Street; Park Row; Picayune Place; etc)
•    Media power, message and the modern skyscraper (China Media Group HQ, Beijing; the New York Times building, ‎Manhattan; Der Spiegel building, Hamburg; etc)
•    Media cities and mediated cities (Facebook Menlo Park Campus, Silicon Valley; MediaCity, Salford Quays; Media City Park, Dubai; etc)
•    Liminal spaces, private architectures, media publics (blogging and the coffee shop; radical media and the built environment; media cultures in the ‘post-newsroom’ age; etc)
•    Reuse, relocation, and the afterlife of media architecture (the Daily Express building, Manchester; the Tribune building, Chicago; BBC/Channel 4 move from London to the North, etc)
•    The relationship between media building design and professional ideologies of journalism/newswork (soft power and media architecture; the ‘newsroom’ as a social and cultural construct; etc)
•    Race, Ethnicity and Media Buildings (the Defender building, Chicago; the Daily Forward building, New York; etc)
•    Media architecture and the end of empire (Times of India building, Mumbai; National Media Group, Nairobi; Broadcasting House, London; etc)

Abstracts of no more than 400 words should be sent to conference organisers Carole O’Reilly [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] and E. James West [This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.] no later than 16 December 2019

A limited number of travel awards are available to subsidize conference attendance by PGRs, ECRs and temporary faculty. To be considered please submit an estimate of travel expenses with your abstract.

Dear Delegates,

Hosting the Sixth Annual Conference of ESPRit at IULM has been a wonderful experience for us. We've had the opportunity to experience at first hand the intrinsic qualities of ESPRit, over and above the academic quality of the panels and papers: a genuine passion for research, rigorous but never pigeonholed into distinct disciplines and approaches, respect for all serious researchers regardless of their status, and not least openness and friendliness.

We thank you all for making it such an interesting and successful event! And, of course, we hope that you enjoyed both the conference and your stay in Milan. You will soon find a photo gallery of the event on the ESPRit conference website ( We invite you to send us your pictures so that we may all share them!

It is now time to launch the call for papers for the Journal of European Periodical Studies. As already announced by Marianne van Remoortel during her welcome address, the best contributions will be published in a special issue of JEPS focused on the theme of the conference: “Conflict in the Periodical Press” ( As co-editors of this special issue, we are delighted to invite you to submit your complete papers by sending them to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . The deadline for submission is 13thNovember 2017. Authors will be notified of acceptance/non-acceptance via email by early January 2018.

Information about JEPS policies and author guidelines can be found at

As the number of quality contributions we expect is likely to be high and space limited in the special issue, we would like to inform our delegates that the best papers that cannot be included in the special issue will be considered for later issues of JEPS.

Scientific Committee:
Prof. Paolo Giovannetti
Prof. Paola Carbone
Dr. Mara Logaldo
Dr. Andrea Chiurato