Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Bending Time and Space Further in the Library

I hadn't realized until I got here that the center where I am spending the year is the successor institution to Dropsie College, a now-defunct institution of higher learning that was the first in the United States to be accredited to award the PhD in Jewish Studies. A lot of the greats in biblical studies, Semitics and Hebrew and Jewish Studies from the middle of the twentieth century passed through. Their correspondence and libraries are now housed here. Last week I posted an image of a book that had the bookplates of the Dropsie and Penn libraries; today I happened to pull a book that has the plates of all three institutions that the center has been, including the Annenberg Research Institute, which is what Dropsie had become and which remained independent until it became a part of Penn in 1993. It's heady to have the physical reminder on my desk of what this place is and has been. Here, then is a visual history of the institution in the form of its own bookplates in a copy of Maimonides' Guide of the Perplexed:

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