Tanya Kirk

Tanya Kirk
Lead Curator, Printed Heritage Collections 1601-1900
Early printed books (particularly British and Irish), English literature, early newspapers, women’s history, children’s literature, Shakespeare, exhibition curation
Related Offices
Day events organiser, CILIP Rare Books and Special Collections Group; RBSCG rep to Historic Libraries Forum committee

I am responsible for the British Library’s collections of Western materials printed 1601-1900, with an emphasis on British and Irish collections. In previous roles at the British Library, I have been the Lead Curator for printed English literature across all periods, and a rare books reference librarian working in the Rare Books and Music Reading Room.

Since becoming a curator in 2010 I have worked on five exhibitions all in the broad area of English literature.



  • Fantasy: Realms of Imagination (2023)
  • Harry Potter: A History of Magic (2017)
  • Shakespeare in Ten Acts (2016)
  • Terror and Wonder: the Gothic Imagination (2014)
  • Picture This: Children’s Illustrated Classics (2013)
  • Writing Britain: Wastelands to Wonderlands (2012)
  • Out of this World: Science Fiction but not as we know it (2011)