For many, literature and marketing are considered opposite phenomena. This book discusses cases in which the two are closely connected. It argues that literature is subject to the same mechanisms as other commercial products: our experience of literary texts is prefigured by brands, trademarks that identify a product and differentiate it from its competitors. From the early modern period onwards, literary authors and their texts are constantly ‘branded’ and have been both the object and the trailblazer of a complex marketing process. The authors of this volume analyze this branding process throughout the centuries, focusing on the Netherlands. To what extent is our experience of Dutch literature prefigured by brands, and what role does branding play when introducing European authors in the Dutch literary field (or vice versa)? By answering these questions, Branding Books Across the Agesseeks to show how literary scholars understand branding – a phenomenon that has long been intertwined with literature.
For this volume Nina Geerdink (UU) and myself contributed the chapter on early modern process of literary branding. You can find the Open Access publication on the publisher’s website.