ISSN / EISSN : 02042061 / 02042061
Current Publisher: Vilnius University Press (10.15388)
Total articles ≅ 632
Latest articles in this journal
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 7-34; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.45
Incunabula are considered a particularly important part of the documentary heritage. 520 incunabula are preserved in eight different Lithuanian memory institutions. The engagement of Lithuanian libraries in the development of the international database of incunabula provenances, Material Evidence in Incunabula (MEI: https://data.cerl.org/mei/_search), intensified research on incunabulistics, as it led to a closer examination of the marks of the former owners. The article presents the latest data on the distribution of incunabula in different Lithuanian memory institutions, as well as analyzes various book marks that were not recorded in Nojus Feigelmanas’ catalog of Lithuanian incunabula or was revised and supplemented, and evaluates their significance in the printed book culture of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. The analysis is performed using the provenance method, however is not limited to property marks, but also includes margins – marks left by a reader on the pages of books, and other marks not related to property or reading, providing significant information on book history, culture and peculiarities of reading at that time. In the 15th century, there were no printing houses in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, so the main spread of books was by trade. The entries with prices identified in the incunabula reveal a relatively early time of purchase of the incunabula and testify that the books in the 16th-17th centuries were an expensive commodity. They usually mention groschen, the common currency in the territory of Lithuania-Poland, less often – florins or ducats. In this case, the large variety of prices does not allow to draw more specific conclusions on the prices of incunabula in the relevant period, but these data as a source of book history will serve in general when studying the value of the old books and the circumstances of their acquisition. Purchase records usually also provide information about a former owner of a book. The article focuses more on lesser-known owners on whom new information has been found or existing data have been updated, attention is also paid to female donators. The article also discusses the records left by the incunabula rubricators, which allows to determine the period of the book entry into the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, as well as to look at them as one of the first readers. Various inscriptions left by anonymous owners require the most effort. Entries of the 15th-16th centuries, mostly in Latin, many of which are abstracts of an existing book or notes on it, additions to the text, are still awaiting detailed reading and research. Identified Lithuanian words will be a valuable source of the language history for researchers of the old Lithuanian language. Various marginalia – reviews on a book, notes from everyday life, counting the year of the book, as well as graffiti, different drawings that can be seen as feather attempts, amateur illustrations, caricatures or even as an expression of reading boredom, will be an important material to describe a reader’s relationship to the book at the time, for which the incunabula, like books of other ages, were not only the object of study or research, but also a kind of notebook for important thoughts, synopses, everyday details.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 35-95; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.46
In this article, the latest data about the personal book collection items of King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania Sigismund II Augustus in Vilnius University (VU) Library are presented. The authors that have been doing research on these books have not ascertained all of the embossed images that were used for cover decoration and have not identified the locations of where these books were bound and have not disclosed all of the provenances. In order to amend the lack of knowledge about the books of Sigismund II Augustus in VU library, the book covers of the King’s personal library were reviewed de visu and decorative ornaments were described. The ownership signs of the books were registered once again. While describing and comparing these books with the copies in various libraries of the world, the number of physical books (14) and publications in composite volumes (21) kept in VU library was assessed. The name of one book and a publisher’s imprint of two books were specified, eight provenances that were not mentioned by previous authors were registered. While describing book covers, the embossed images were given provisory names. Connections between the supralibros, dates of binding, decorative wheels, single embossed images, and other decorative elements were detected and lead to a reasonable conclusion that eight out of fourteen books from the Sigismund II Augustus collection were bound in Kraków, five were bound by bookbinders in Vilnius, while one was rebound in the 18th century. The identification of tools used by craftsmen that worked in Kraków and Vilnius will allow to ascertain the manufacturing location of similar book covers made in the middle of the 16th century.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 239-246; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.54
HAYKOWSKI, MICHAŁ. HENRYK BUKOWSKI. IMIĘ ŻYJE NADAL. WARSZAWA: POLONIKA, 2019. 498 S. ISBN 978-83-66172-18-0
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 168-187; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.50
The article was inspired by the World Congress of Lithuanian Writers held in Vilnius, in May 2019, during which the literary canon was discussed – not only in Lithuania, but abroad as well: what determines the entry of some books into the school canon, their assessment with literary prizes, various nominations, and why other books remain less noticed by readers and / or literary critics. The theme of this article was further highlighted by the heated debate on the elections of the Book of the Year that took place throughout the autumn (and is still ongoing). Various top five, top ten, top twelve lists, debates over the update of the contents of the curriculum of secondary schools inevitably raise the issue of the literary canon. Therefore, it is considered that perhaps the problem is not what falls or does not fall into the literary canon, but rather how much power society gives to the literary canon itself. The main tasks of the research: to introduce the main theoretical aspects of the literary canon; to discuss the issue of literary canon and women’s creative works; to identify the dominants of the literary canon in the diaspora. The article discusses the issue of the literary canon precisely in women’s literature that was created and is still being created in the diaspora. Research sources: various literary and cultural presses of the Lithuanian diaspora in the US (Aidai (The Echoes), Darbininkas (The Worker), Draugas (The Friend), Gabija, Naujienos (The News) etc.), Literatūros lankai (Literary Folios) (Buenos Aires, 1952-1959), the book by Vladas Kulbokas Lithuanian Literary Criticism in Exile (Rome, 1982). The main reason for this discussion of (non)canonization of women’s literature is that statistically female authors write more on emigration topics. There were more women writers outside Lithuania in the second wave of emigration (DPs); more women than men give a sense to their exile experience even today. The article emphasizes that women’s involvement in public life has never been either simple or natural. Even greater challenges awaited the creating women in 1944, when they moved to the West – Germany, Austria, and from 1949 – to the US, Canada, Australia. Questions are raised as to how and why public attitudes towards the writing, creative woman have changed; how the community of the Lithuanian diaspora, influenced by a new context, new economic and political conditions in the US, thought about new creative challenges, what kind of goals and objectives were set for it. If feminization processes call for rebellion against the dominant (male) canon, if today we are talking about not a single existing canon, but rather about canons, if it is emphasized that the canon is nonetheless a changing thing related with a system of certain time values, then the canon may not exist at all and it cannot exist? The article also actualizes modern migration processes and their reflections in literature (created both in Lithuania and abroad, outside Lithuania; written not only in Lithuanian but also in English) as well, opens new possibilities for reading and interpreting women’s works – and above all – the article dedicated to the World Lithuanian Year, seeks to create a dialogue field that can help deepen the understanding of today’s (e)migration.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 96-122; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.47
During World War II, in 1939–1944, there was a Polish armed resistance movement in Eastern Lithuania, which was called Armia Krajowa (Home Army) in the In researching the activities of Armia Krajowa (AK) in Eastern Lithuania, not only historiography is valuable, but also surviving documents and memoirs, as well as the Bernardine Fund preserved in the Lithuanian Central State Archives. So far, this Fund does not seem to receive much attention from scientists researching the activities of AK in Lithuania, as well as archives compiled by Poles residing in other countries. Based on the concept of storage medium, the article analyzes the case of the Bernardine Fund in the context of archival research of the Polish diaspora. During the analysis of the documents kept in the Bernardine Fund, it was observed that the said Fund held significant documents that could supplement / replace the existing narrative about Kmicic’s AK partisan brigade. Kmicic’s AK partisan brigade is noteworthy, as it is the first armed AK unit to launch a consistent armed resistance, but so far there are no separate studies dedicated to the activities of this brigade. The storage medium is the basis of memory communication that gives authenticity to the constructed memory narrative. The Bernardine Fund is a storage medium that originated in the past and reached the present unchanged / slightly changed, and that contains a certain memory narrative about AK. The Bernardine Fund and the documents contained in it are valuable storage media that can help reveal the situation of the residents of Eastern Lithuania during World War II and shed new light on the military activities of AK. In the context of research and preservation of the written heritage of the Polish diaspora, this medium has not yet received the attention of scientists, although the example of the Kmicic’s AK brigade proved that this Fund contains documents that reveal hitherto unknown aspects of AK activities. A fact turns into an event only when certain groups draw their attention to it, when they give meaning to it and start talking and writing about it, and it begins to be remembered. All significant events are just someone’s creations, created just to justify the present in a way that is convenient for the collective, the political elite, or the heads of state. The case of Kmicic’s brigade has proven that no fact is completely lost. If a fact is not currently updated and used, it does not mean that it will be the case all the time. The documents kept in the Fund reflect that during the formation of the historiographical narrative, the collective memory of the said brigade, part of the events was deliberately omitted in order to give integrity to the narrative being formed.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 141-167; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.49
Following World War II, Lithuanian academic youth, who found themselves and continued their studies at the US universities, joined various organizations, as a result active social, cultural and societal life of students took place. The main organizations uniting Lithuanian students in the US (the Lithuanian Student Union, the Catholic Student Union Ateitis, the Academic Scout Movement, the Lithuanian student group Santara) perceiving the impact of information, took special care of their press publications that had become one of the main tools in helping to gather academic youth, to disseminate organizational / ideological ideas not only among students but also among the wider society. This article presents and analyzes one-time and continuous publications published by Lithuanian students in the US, which have not received wider attention from researchers so far. The main attention is focused on the publications published by one of the organizations - Lithuanian student group Santara (since 1957 Santara-Šviesa Federations), as well as the analysis of the publications published by other organizations - the Lithuanian Student Union, the Academic Scout Movement, the Catholic Student Union Ateitis - their repertoire, content, significance in student life. The study covers the period of the 1950s-1960s allowing the observation of the most intensive activity of Lithuanian students in the US, their active participation in the public life of the Lithuanian community and a great deal of attention to own press problems. At that time, the main Lithuanian student organizations published various publications for their members and the general public: from one-time (humorous, occasional or camp) publications, newsletters intended for members only to successful and none too successful attempts to publish their own periodicals. The Lithuanian American Student Union established in 1951 for the purpose of informing members since March 1954 began publishing Lietuvių Studentų Sąjungos JAV biuletenis (the US Newsletter of the Lithuanian Student Union), which soon became a serious student magazine, Studentų gairės (Student Guidelines), published by in a printing house, and from 1954, students launched the English-language magazine Lituanus, which became an academic magazine for foreigners, published to this day. Ideological organizations (scouts, members of Ateitis and Santara), which had student columns in the major Lithuanian press, and published various one-time or continuous publications, took a very active part in the press work. The organizations had their own newsletters: the Academic Scout Movement (ASM) published the newsletter Ad meliorem for ASM members, the Catholic Student Union Ateitis in Cleveland since 1951 published Gaudeamus, in 1957-1961, Santara published the newsletter Žvilgsniai (Glances). Newsletters of separate columns (such as New Yorko Santara - New York Santara) also appeared, although they were irregular, often only published for a short time. Various one-off publications were popular among young people: occasional, humoristic (e. g. Krambambulis, Sumuštinis - Sandwich), a gathering or a camp publications (Arielkon – To Homemade Vodka, Niekšybės paslaptis - The Secret of Villainy, Po nemigos - After Insomnia etc.). These publications were self-published in a very small circulation and distributed only among members of the organization. Many of them have not survived or if survived are kept by private archives or archival institutions. The place of publication and circulation of these publications were usually not indicated, unmarked; publishers, editors, authors of articles and illustrations are left unknown, periodicity of publications and even the number of published publications – unclear. The content of most student published publications was analogous. The publications contained a variety of information – from serious texts analyzing issues on Lithuanian identity and social activities relevant to the young generation of the diaspora, as well as brief organizational information, humour columns, photographs and friendly banter addressed to self and colleagues. Despite their quality and sometimes seemingly insignificant content, these publications become an important, often the only one source revealing to researchers the peculiarities of the little-known American youth camping, the peculiarities of student social and community life.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 209-228; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.52
In the USSR-reoccupied Latvia (1944−1990), almost all the Latvian literature, published abroad after World War II, was forbidden to the general public. There were only two incomplete and restricted collections of emigration literature, available to prominent scientists and highest Soviet officials. As the Soviet censorship weakened in the late 1980s, libraries could begin start a systematic acquisition of exile books and some periodicals. The donation of the whole library of the Uppsala Latvian society to the State Library of Latvia (now the National Library of Latvia) in 1989, before the renewal of Latvia’s independence, started the flow of emigration books, documents, and artefacts to the memory institutions of Latvia, where the most important cultural heritage from the Latvian exile has found its home. Using the documents of the Uppsala Latvian Society kept at the National Archives of Latvia, the National Library of Latvia, and the Academic Library of the University of Latvia, the history of the library and the importance of its donation in the accumulation of exile cultural heritage in Latvia has been characterized. The study shows that despite the library manager’s efforts to provide readers with the best emigrant Latvian literature, the library collection in exile was not properly valued − its readership gradually decreased as Latvians became more and more integrated into Swedish society. After the transfer to Latvia, the library became the basis of the of the unified collection of Latvian literature, in which exile publications are constantly utilised as an important part of the national cultural heritage.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 123-140; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.48
The article briefly presents the US National Archives, where a number of documents important for the history of the Lithuanian diplomacy, as well as a document significant for the history of the Lithuanian diaspora and its political organizations, are preserved. One of them is Memorandum of Conversation dated 2 February 1949 and prepared by John D. Hickerson, an official of the US Department of State. It extensively describes his meeting and conversations with members of the Supreme Committee for the Liberation of Lithuania, the Prelate Mykolas Krupavičius and Vaclovas Sidzikauskas, who for the first time visited the US and were accompanied to the meeting by the then Lithuanian Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary Povilas Žadeikis. Memorandum of Conversation is introduced into scientific circulation through methods of archival document monitoring and case analysis, as well as additional tools (such as periodicals and memoirs, archival documents) and based on the principles of document publication. The document published for the first time, as a primary source, supplements the data of Lithuanian historiography, gives a broader content to the known fact, reinforces the scientific research base on the history of Lithuanian diplomacy, the history of the Lithuanian diaspora’s political organizations and separately – the history of Lithuanian-the US bilateral diplomatic relations.
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 247-257; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.55
LEMEŠKIN, ILJA. LITHUANICA ALITER. VILNIUS: LIETUVIŲ KALBOS INSTITUTAS, 2019. 440 P. ISBN 978-609-411-255-3
Knygotyra, Volume 74, pp 229-238; doi:10.15388/knygotyra.2020.74.53
Seeks to cover interdisciplinary research topics on book and digital media history and culture, including book history and historiography, traditional and digital publishing, research on media literacy and reading, printed and digital heritage etc. Indexed in the Scopus database from 2018.