Finding the Lost Generation through the books they borrowed
An interactive website will provide scholars and the public with new insights into the Lost Generation, a group of writers and artists that came of age during World War I. The website is based on records, housed at Princeton's Firestone Library, from an English-language book shop and lending library in Paris during the 1920s and 30s. Writers such as Ernest Hemingway, Gertrude Stein and others borrowed and purchased books from the shop, known as Shakespeare and Company. Working with Princeton's Center for Digital Humanities, Joshua Kotin, associate professor of English, and his team of graduate and undergraduate students have digitized the shop's records and are building a web portal that integrates borrowing histories, financial transactions and maps. With Dean for Research Innovation funding, Kotin will lead the development of visualizations, lesson plans for undergraduate and high school courses, a conference and other methods to help researchers and the public draw deeper insights from these materials.