The Victorians and the Visual Imagination

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Overview

This innovative, interdisciplinary study explores the Victorians' attitudes toward sight. It draws on writers as diverse as George Eliot, Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Rudyard Kipling as well as pre-Raphaelite and realist painters including Millais, Burne-Jones, William Powell Frith and Whistler, and a host of Victorian scientists, cultural commentators and art critics. Topics discussed include blindness, memory, hallucination, dust, and the importance of the horizon—a dazzling array of subjects linked together by the operations of the eye and brain. This richly illustrated book will appeal to anyone studying Victorian culture.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"In a dazzling array of ideas about seeing, specularity, and spectatorship, she [Flint] displays her own acute panoptic awareness with wide-ranging examples of the technology of vision..." Victorian Studies

"The book is especially impressive in its uses of nineteenth century science...this a book many people would like to own so they can reread some of the more intensely rich chapters or reach for a particular section as mental stimulation before heading off to class...as always in a book of Kate Flint's-the bibliography is simply extraordinary." English Literature in Transition

"Flint indulges her readers in an assortment of visual-cultural delights..." Gillen D'Arcy Wood, Wordsworth Circle

"Flint's book is erudite. The author ranges across Victorian literature, painting, and science to find figures as seemingly disparate as John Everett Millais, George Eliot, and the scientist George Lewes each pondering the pleasures and perils of invisible worlds." Albion

"Enriched by her diverse explorations, Flint's revised dissertation is a penetrating and incisive investigation into the Victorian visual imagination ... Her insightful observations make this an important book for scholars of literature, philosophy, art history, and the history of science." Nineteenth Century Literature

"...Flint generously offers a valuable sourcebook for the unseen aspects, the vanishing points of Victorian visuality, and in the process expands the horizon of the field and the visual imagingation of her readers." Novel

"The Victorians and the Visual Imagination is an excellent place from which to start exploring the many pinpoints, vistas, and horizons of Victorian visuality." Victorians Institute Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521089524
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 11/6/2008
  • Pages: 444
  • Product dimensions: 6.60 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

1. The visible and the unseen; 2. 'The mote within the eye'; 3. Blindness and insight; 4. Lifting the veil; 5. Under the ice; 6. The buried city; 7. The role of the art critic; 8. Criticism, language and narrative; 9. Surface and depth; 10. Hallucination and vision; Conclusion: the Victorian horizon.

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