Rare Books / Special Collections Expert Patrick Scott To Speak on Tuesday, Oct. 2

WILSON, N.C. — Barton College will welcome Dr. Patrick Scott, Research Fellow for Scottish Collections and Distinguished Professor of English Literature for the University of South Carolina Libraries, on Tuesday, Oct. 2. He will present the lecture “ What Old Books Tell Us About Writers and Readers.”  The event will be held at 7:30 p.m. in The Sam and Marjorie Ragan Writing Center on campus. There is no charge for the lecture, and the community is invited to attend.

Now retired after 34 years in the English Department at the University of South Carolina, Dr. Scott previously served as Director of the Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections (RBSC), and he carries with him a long list of varied contributions in scholarship and teaching. He earned Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees from Merton College at the University of Oxford, a second Master of Arts degree in Victorian literature from the University of Leicester, and a Ph.D. from the University of Edinburgh. Prior to joining USC’s English Department in 1976, Dr. Scott taught at secondary and college levels in a variety of institutions, first in Nigeria in 1962-63, and subsequently at the Universities of Leicester and Edinburgh and at the College of William & Mary in Virginia.

Dr. Scott’s primary scholarship has been in Victorian literature and textual editing, though he has also written on and taught Scottish literature, African literature, historical rhetoric, and the history of English studies. His publications include 10 books or editions, over 150 articles, and over 140 conference papers or invited lectures, on a range of topics, especially on the poetry of Tennyson and Clough. He also serves on the editorial boards of several journals and two major collected editions (of James Hogg and Robert Burns), he has received numerous grants for research and special projects, including major grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, and he has twice been elected president of the Victorians Institute.

He has received a number of recognitions for his teaching, including the English Department Teaching Award (1985) and USC’s Mungo Award for Undergraduate Teaching (2004). At USC, he has taught over 40 different courses, and directed 15 Ph.D.’s and 26 master’s theses; his final course for English, a graduate seminar on Tennyson for the poet’s bicentenary in fall 2009, was one he last taught for the Tennyson centenary in 1992, and each time he had students who successfully publishing their seminar papers in respected journals. Recently, he has also taught undergraduate and graduate courses in the history of the book, and a new course for the library school on Rare Book Librarianship.

For the past 14 years, Dr. Scott has combined a half-load of teaching with his current full-time administrative post with USC Libraries. His initial focus as director was on increased use of the collections, in exhibits, teaching, public programs, and conferences, and he has mounted over 100 different rare book exhibitions, on campus and around the state. Patrick also started the first RBSC web-pages in 1996, and he has collaborated more recently with the libraries’ Digital Collections team to make unique items available in new ways.

As director, he has also been responsible for developing the collections, chiefly through gifts (gift items since 1996 have totaled well over $6 million). The collections cover many disciplines; recent acquisitions have included a major collection of John Milton, putting USC among the top 10 Milton collections worldwide, as well as significant works in natural history and astronomy. RBSC collections have increased six-fold since 1990 and now total some 150,000 volumes, with over 50 archival collections.

During his visit to Barton’s campus, Dr. Scott will also address multiple audiences with students and faculty during the day. For additional information about the lecture, please contact George Loveland, director of Hackney Library, at 252-399-6501 or email: gwloveland@barton.edu.


Questions? Please contact Kathy Daughety, director of public relations at Barton College, at 252-399-6529 or email: kdaughety@barton.edu.