News | January 3, 2023

The Secret Life of Books: D. F. McKenzie Memorial Lecture 2023


Join us for the 2023 D. F. McKenzie Memorial Lecture, by Professor Tom Mole, author of the best-selling publication The Secret Life of Books. As new media radically changes our experience of books, this illustrated lecture draws on a wide range of examples to explore all the things we do with books — and all the things they do to us.

Join us in person at the National Library Wellington, New Zealand or online on January 31, 2023, 6pm-8pm.

The D. F. McKenzie Memorial Lecture honours the life and work of New Zealand’s most distinguished bibliographer, teacher, and outstanding international scholar. This year's lecture is delivered by Professor Tom Mole from Durham University, author of The Secret Life of Books: Why they mean more than words (2019). We use books for many things besides reading. They help shape our identities as individuals and groups, and display those identities to others. They get tangled up in our relationships when given as gifts, they mark milestones in our lives, and they even become casualties of war.
Stay on after the lecture for a reception at 7pm to meet the speaker.
Can't make it in person? This event will also be delivered using Zoom. You do not need to install the software in order to attend, you can opt to run zoom from your browser. Register if you’d like to join this free talk and we'll send you the link to use on the day.

This free annual lecture honours the life and work of the distinguished bibliographer, teacher, and outstanding international scholar, Don McKenzie. He was Professor of English at Victoria University of Wellington, served on the Trustees of the National Library, and was a long-time member of the Friends of the Turnbull Library. This lecture series was established by Don’s friends and colleagues after his untimely death in 1999, and is co-hosted by Wai-te-ata Press, Te Herenga Waka – Victoria University of Wellington, which Don founded in 1962.

Tom Mole is Principal of Van Mildert College and Professor of English Literature and Book History at Durham University, UK. Best known for his recent work, The Secret Life of Books, he specialises in the history of celebrity, book history, reception history and Romantic and Victorian literature, especially Lord Byron.