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Project Description


Author Homepages








Author Homepages – A project for the collection, analysis and long-term archiving of author homepages

The term “Author Homepage” refers to a form of self-promotion used by authors and made possible by the World Wide Web. It is conventionally associated with websites created prior to the popularisation of the interactive Web 2.0, primarily appearing as a static publication format that authors use in a self-determined manner as a means of presenting their literary work to a public audience. The aim of the project is to archive, document and analyse a selection of Author Homepages from German speaking countries. The Selection will be pre-decidet in cooperation with relevant Institutions (literary archives, libraries etc.). The Results will be displayed in a database and a public digital archive.

Duration: 01.05.2011-30.05.2014
Conductor: Stefan Neuhaus; scientific accomplishment: Elisabeth Sporer; coordination and organisation:Renate Giacomuzzi 
Sponsor: Fonds zur Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung (FWF)   




Selection criteria

Within the project it is necessary to reduce the selection to approximatly 100 homepages. Because of the large quantity of author homepages it is not easy to single out specific pages to archive. For this reason we base our selection on specific criteria of versatileness and significance. Because it is a scientific archival project, the selection criteria can not be based on subjective assessment of the quality of a homepage (What is a “good” homepage?). This could lead to canonisation, which should be avoided. The selection is not intended to represent a decoration in any way. That is why the criteria should represent the following areas:

  • the geographic area (a selection proportionate to the population in each German speaking country)
  • the literary scene (degree of popularity, reputation in the literary scene through awards, literary criticism, “Bestenlisten” etc.)
  • the archival area (cooperation with other archives and consideration of their wishes)

In addition we will include in our selection homepages which are informative in regard to the author’s work and self-perception, because of their content, presentation and/or communication options.

More recent forms of presentation on the internet will also be considered, for example Blogs. It is certainly difficult to draw the line between a regular diary and a blog which includes some characteristics of a homepage. So we will only include blogs in our collection which contain information about the authors’ biography/bibliography and so assume the characteristics of a homepage.

Likewise we will include social networks in our research. We will analyse in detail the public facebook pages of authors, where the content is self-determined by the author. These pages assume the characteristics of a homepage as well.

Often the author homepage is operated by the publisher. This form of author homepages will generally not be considered in this project, because there are no conclusions regarding the self-perception of the author or his work. We are only interested in publisher websites which were implemented in consultation with the author and/or contain independent content (own domain, podcasts, texts by the author etc.).

Because of the large quantity of author homepages, blogs, facebook-sites or similar, it is not possible to capture all of them. If you miss a homepage o.s. in our collection, which corresponds our criteria, we are grateful for references.