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Research at St Andrews

Jessica Jade Farrell-Jobst


Jessica Jade Farrell-Jobst


Research overview

My thesis examines the multifaceted roles in which women participated in the early modern book trade. Centring on women as printers, booksellers, publishers, and long-distance traders, I look at how women crafted work identities and exercised agency. In particular, women printers and publishers were able to announce their participation by affixing their names on title pages and colophons.  

My study focuses on the book trade in the imperial city of Nuremburg in order to determine the particulars of not only the city’s print crafts but also the legal and social considerations that affected the lives of women in the trade. Engaging with a singular regional context has allowed for an in-depth examination of several women-led businesses and family run corporation where women were of central importance. Through this work I have been able to increase female printers’ bibliographies, establish the presence of women in male directed companies and highlight several gendered business practises. 

I investigate how gender and regional considerations circumscribed working lives of women in these trades, but moreover, I explore how individuals could circumnavigate these social barriers.  My work contributes to the growing conversation on women’s work and gender in the international book trade and comments on the similarities and differences women across Early Modern Europe faced in the workplace. 

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