Picture Theory: Essays on Verbal and Visual Representation

Overview

What precisely, W. J. T. Mitchell asks, are pictures (and theories of pictures) doing now, in the late twentieth century, when the power of the visual is said to be greater than ever before, and the "pictorial turn" supplants the "linguistic turn" in the study of culture? This book by one of America's leading theorists of visual representation offers a rich account of the interplay between the visible and the readable across culture, from literature to visual art to the mass ...

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Overview

What precisely, W. J. T. Mitchell asks, are pictures (and theories of pictures) doing now, in the late twentieth century, when the power of the visual is said to be greater than ever before, and the "pictorial turn" supplants the "linguistic turn" in the study of culture? This book by one of America's leading theorists of visual representation offers a rich account of the interplay between the visible and the readable across culture, from literature to visual art to the mass media.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Mitchell (English and art, Univ. of Chicago), who is editor of Critical Inquiry, addresses a variety of concerns about the nexus of word and depiction. In cogent, jargon-free prose, Mitchell by turn takes up the reason behind a cartoon's apparent humor; the flow between narrative and memory, which can and has been ruptured by slavery; painterly theories; and much more. Incorporating theories propounded by Barthes, Wittgenstein, Magritte, and others, this volume is a veritable chocolate box of well-developed ideas for aesthetics students and scholars. It is also accessible to the lay reader, engaging for the researcher, and an emblematic resource for classroom discussion for the teacher of art history or philosophy. Recommended for most collections.-Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley P.L., Cal.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226532325
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/1995
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 462
  • Sales rank: 706,498
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

W. J. T. Mitchell is the Gaylord Donnelley Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of English Language and Literature, the Department of Art History, and the College at the University of Chicago. He is also coeditor of the journal Critical Inquiry.

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Acknowledgments
Introduction
1: The Pictorial Turn
2: Metapictures
3: Beyond Comparison: Picture, Text, and Method
4: Visible Language: Blake's Art of Writing
5: Ekphrasis and the Other
6: Narrative, Memory, and Slavery
7: Ut Pictura Theoria: Abstract Painting and Language
8: Word, Image, and Object: Wall Labels for Robert Morris
9: The Photographic Essay: Four Case Studies
10: Illusion: Looking at Animals Looking
11: Realism, Irrealism, and Ideology: After Nelson Goodman
12: The Violence of Public Art: Do the Right Thing
13: From CNN to JFK
Conclusion: Some Pictures of Representation
Index

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