Ephemeraphilia: A Queer History

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This article has as its focus a queer object–an otherwise unremarkable ticket for an eighteenth-century assembly or ball in a collection of tickets made by Sir Augustus Wollaston Franks, an influential figure in the development of the British Museum in the Victorian period. I argue that the ticket is a tribute to a larger collection, also in the British Museum, made by Sarah Sophia Banks, in order to make claims for the attention to printed ephemera as a queer science that was foundational in the conceptualization and practice of archives of all kinds. The queer object of Franks’s ticket, in relation to the history of printed ephemera, is used to contextualize and historicize debates about ephemera in contemporary queer theory and cultural studies more generally.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-186
Number of pages13
JournalAngelaki: journal of the theoretical humanities
Issue number1
Early online date28 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

Copyright 2018 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Augustus Wollaston Franks
  • British Museum
  • Department of Prints and Drawings
  • Romantic bibliomania
  • Sarah Sophia Banks
  • ephemera
  • ephemera in queer theory
  • ephemerality
  • history of ephemera
  • tickets

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