The fear of falling, the awareness of lost innocence, lost illusions, lost hopes and intentions, of civilization in decline—these are the themes which link literature to theology, both concerned with the shape of human destiny. Otten discusses the continuing viability of the myth of the Fall in literature. He relates a wide variety of romantic and modern works to fundamental issues in modern Christianity.
Robert W. Rydell contends that America's early world's fairs actually served to legitimate racial exploitation at home and the creation of an empire abroad. He looks in particular to the "ethnological" displays of nonwhites—set up by showmen but endorsed by prominent anthropologists—which lent scientific credibility to popular racial attitudes and helped build public support for domestic and foreign policies. Rydell's lively and thought-provoking study draws on archival records, newspaper and magazine articles, guidebooks, popular novels, and oral histories.
In American Pietàs, Ruby C. Tapia reveals how visual representations of racialized motherhood shape and reflect national citizenship. By means of a sustained engagement with Roland Barthes’s suturing of race, death, and the maternal in Camera Lucida, Tapia contends that the contradictory essence of the photograph is both as a signifier of death and a guarantor of resurrection.
Tapia explores the implications of this argument for racialized productions of death and the maternal in the context of specific cultural moments: the commemoration of Princess Diana in U.S. magazines; the intertext of Toni Morrison’s and Hollywood’s Beloved; the social and cultural death in teen pregnancy, imaged and regulated in California’s Partnership for Responsible Parenting campaigns; and popular constructions of the “Widows of 9/11” in print and televisual journalism.
Taken together, these various visual media texts function in American Pietàs as cultural artifacts and as visual nodes in a larger network of racialized productions of maternal bodies in contexts of national death and remembering. To engage this network is to ask how and toward what end the racial project of the nation imbues some maternal bodies with resurrecting power and leaves others for dead. In the spaces between these different maternities, says Tapia, U.S. citizen-subjects are born—and reborn.
In considering how anthropologists have chosen to look at and write about politics, Joan Vincent contends that the anthropological study of politics is itself a historical process. Intended not only as a representation but also as a reinterpretation, her study arises from questioning accepted views and unexamined assumptions. This wide-ranging, cross-disciplinary work is a critical review of the anthropological study of politics in the English-speaking world from 1879 to the present, a counterpoint of text and context that describes for each of three eras both what anthropologists have said about politics and the national and international events that have shaped their interests and concerns. It is also an account of how intellectual, social, and political conditions influenced the discipline by conditioning both anthropological inquiry and the avenues of research supported by universities and governments. Finally, it is a study of the politics of anthropology itself, examining the survival of theses or schools of thought and the influence of certain individuals and departments.
In Blutopia Graham Lock studies the music and thought of three pioneering twentieth-century musicians: Sun Ra, Duke Ellington, and Anthony Braxton. Providing an alternative to previous analyses of their work, Lock shows how these distinctive artists were each influenced by a common musical and spiritual heritage and participated in self-conscious efforts to create a utopian vision of the future. A century after Ellington’s birth, Lock reassesses his use of music as a form of black history and compares the different approaches of Ra, a band leader who focused on the future and cosmology, and Braxton, a contemporary composer whose work creates its own elaborate mythology. Arguing that the majority of writing on black music and musicians has—even if inadvertently—incorporated racial stereotypes, he explains how each artist reacted to criticism and sought to break free of categorical confines. Drawing on social history, musicology, biography, cultural theory, and, most of all, statements by the musicians themselves, Lock writes of their influential work. Blutopia will be a welcome contribution to the literature on twentieth-century African American music and creativity. It will interest students of jazz, American music, African American studies, American culture, and cultural studies.
Building the Urban Environment is a comparative study of the contestation among planners, policymakers, and the grassroots over the production and meaning of urban space. Award-winning historian Harold Platt presents case studies of seven cities, including Rotterdam, Chicago, and Sao Paulo, to show how, over time, urban life created hybrid spaces that transformed people, culture, and their environments.
As Platt explains, during the post-1945 race to technological modernization, policymakers gave urban planners of the International Style extraordinary influence to build their utopian vision of a self-sustaining “organic city.” However, in the 1960s, they faced a revolt of the grassroots. Building the Urban Environment traces the rise and fall of the Modernist planners during an era of Cold War, urban crisis, unnatural disasters, and global restructuring in the wake of the oil-energy embargo of the ’70s.
Ultimately, Platt provides a way to measure different visions of the postwar city against actual results in terms of the built environment, contrasting how each city created a unique urban space.
The work of Douglas Harper has for two decades documented worlds in eclipse. A glimpse into the life of dairy farmers in upstate New York on the cusp of technological change, Changing Works is no exception. With photographs and interviews with farmers, Harper brings into view a social world altered by machines and stuns us with gorgeous visions of rural times past. As a member of this community, Harper relates compelling stories about families and their dairies that reveal how the advent of industrialized labor changed the way farmers structure their work and organize their lives. His new book charts the transformation of American farming from small dairies based on animal power and cooperative work to industrialized agriculture.
Changing Works combines Harper's pictures with classic images by photographers such as Gordon Parks, Sol Libsohn, and Charlotte Brooks-men and women whose work during the 1940s documented the mechanization and automation of agricultural practices. Part social history and part analysis of the drive to mass production, Changing Works examines how we farmed a half century ago versus how we do today through pictures new and old and through discussions with elderly farmers who witnessed the makeover. Ultimately, Harper challenges timely ecological and social questions about contemporary agriculture. He shows us how the dissolution of cooperative dairy farming has diminished the safety of the practice, degraded the way we relate to our natural environment, and splintered the once tight-knit communities of rural farmers. Mindful, then, of the advantages of preindustrial agriculture, and heeding the alarming spread of mad cow and foot-and-mouth disease, Changing Works harks back to the benefits of an older system.
In this, the first collection of essays to address the development of fairy tale film as a genre, Pauline Greenhill and Sidney Eve Matrix stress, "the mirror of fairy-tale film reflects not so much what its audience members actually are but how they see themselves and their potential to develop (or, likewise, to regress)." As Jack Zipes says further in the foreword, “Folk and fairy tales pervade our lives constantly through television soap operas and commercials, in comic books and cartoons, in school plays and storytelling performances, in our superstitions and prayers for miracles, and in our dreams and daydreams. The artistic re-creations of fairy-tale plots and characters in film—the parodies, the aesthetic experimentation, and the mixing of genres to engender new insights into art and life—mirror possibilities of estranging ourselves from designated roles, along with the conventional patterns of the classical tales.”
Here, scholars from film, folklore, and cultural studies move discussion beyond the well-known Disney movies to the many other filmic adaptations of fairy tales and to the widespread use of fairy tale tropes, themes, and motifs in cinema.
Michael Harker drove past old barns on gravel roads and blacktop highways for years. He generally dismissed them as obsolete outbuildings until November 1993, when he felt compelled to photograph a windmill in Clutier, Iowa. This single photograph launched him on a seven-and-a-half-year mission to document Iowa's barns and all they represent. The result is Harker's Barns: Visions of an American Icon.
Each of the seventy-five black-and-white images featured in Harker's Barns beautifully and heartbreakingly captures the glory and ultimate demise of one of rural America's most enduring icons. From square to round, wood to brick, Dutch to Swedish, occupied or abandoned, the barns documented in this stunning collection are a testament to a passing way of life that was once the lifeblood of Iowa and the Midwest.
Complementing Harker's photographs are vignettes by poet and writer Jim Heynen. Both whimsical and endearing, each vignette treats barns as organic and intelligent entities, reflecting the living history that can be found inside each rural structure.
Iowa's barns are disappearing and with them a way of life; Harker's Barns brilliantly documents their heritage for future generations. As Jim Heynen says, “A good photograph can maintain an old barn through blizzards and hail storms and tornadoes. It is the best support beam and wood preservative an old barn can have.”
In Harker’s Barns documentary photographer Michael Harker captured the glory and the decay of one of rural America’s most elemental icons. Now in Harker’s One-Room Schoolhouses he brings another rural American icon back to life. His stark and stunning photographs of these small, neat buildings—once the social and educational center of rural life, now either abandoned or restored to an artificial quaintness—encapsulate the dramatic transformations that have overtaken the Iowa countryside.
Michael Harker’s goal is to record Iowa’s historically significant architecture before it disappears forever. From Coon Center School no. 5 in Albert City to Pleasant Valley School in Kalona, North River School in Winterset to Douglas Center School in Sioux Rapids, and Iowa’s first school to Grant Wood’s first school, he has achieved this goal on a grand scale in Harker’s One-Room Schoolhouses.
Educational historian Paul Theobald tells the story of the rise and fall of Iowa’s one-room schools, whose numbers fell from close to 15,000 in 1918 to only 1,100 in 1960, all of which had ceased to function as schools by 1980. Moving from the state-wide story to the personal, he introduces us to George Coleman, son of a local farmer and school board director, who kept a sparse diary between December 1869 and June 1870. Young George’s words reveal the intimate way in which one-room schools interacted with the local community, including the local economic scene. Theobald ends by suggesting that these one-room relics of the past may again prove useful.
In his lifetime the early Netherlandish painter Hieronymus Bosch was famous for his phantasmagoric images, and today his name is synonymous with the infernal. The creator of expansive tableaus of fantastic and hellish scenes—where any devil not dancing is too busy eating human souls—he has been as equally misunderstood by history as his paintings have. In this book, Nils Büttner draws on a wealth of historical documents—not to mention Bosch’s paintings—to offer a fresh and insightful look at one of history’s most peculiar artists on the five-hundredth anniversary of his death.
Bosch’s paintings have elicited a number a responses over the centuries. Some have tried to explain them as alchemical symbolism, others as coded messages of a secret cult, and still others have tried to psychoanalyze them. Some have placed Bosch among the Adamites, others among the Cathars, and others among the Brethren of the Free Spirit, seeing in his paintings an occult life of free love, strange rituals, mysterious drugs, and witchcraft. As Büttner shows, Bosch was—if anything—a hardworking painter, commissioned by aristocrats and courtesans, as all painters of his time were. Analyzing his life and paintings against the backdrop of contemporary Dutch culture and society, Büttner offers one of the clearest biographical sketches to date alongside beautiful reproductions of some of Bosch’s most important work. The result is a smart but accessible introduction to a unique artist whose work transcends genre.
In a groundbreaking work of “New Americanist” studies, John R. Eperjesi explores the cultural and economic formation of the Unites States relationship to China and the Pacific Rim in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Eperjesi examines a variety of texts to explore the emergence of what Rob Wilson has termed the “American Pacific.” Eperjesi shows how works ranging from Frank Norris’ The Octopus to the Journal of the American Asiatic Association, from the Socialist newspaper Appeal to Reason to the travel writings of Jack and Charmain London, and from Maxine Hong Kingston’s China Men to Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon—and the cultural dynamics that produced them—helped construct the myth of the American Pacific. By construing the Pacific Rim as a unified region binding together the territorial United States with the areas of Asia and the Pacific, he also demonstrates that the logic of the imperialist imaginary suggested it was not only proper but even incumbent upon the United States to exercise both political and economic influence in the region. As Donald E. Pease notes in his foreword, “by reading foreign policy and economic policy as literature, and by reconceptualizing works of American literature as extenuations of foreign policy and economic theory,” Eperjesi makes a significant contribution to studies of American imperialism.
In this collection of essays, Nicholas Thomas, a leading theorist of historical anthropology, explores the historicization of cultural encounters in the region referred to as Oceania. Basing his claims on wide-ranging historical and ethnographic research and building on his celebrated studies of exchange and colonialism in the Pacific, Thomas describes how outsiders and islanders alike have constructed indigenous cultures over the last two hundred years. In Oceania documents and analyzes the "rhetorical artifacts" of explorers, missionaries, fiction and travel writers, and the people of the Pacific themselves to illustrate how Oceanic identities have been represented over time. Not content with conventional methods of anthropology or history, Thomas draws on postcolonial theory and literary analysis in extraordinarily wide-ranging analyses of texts, visual images, and historical processes. He demonstrates how cultures of the Pacific Islands have dealt with colonialist ventures, modernity, and the debate about the recuperation of histories and traditions. The picture Thomas paints of Oceania, however, is not one of a group of societies stripped of meaning, but one that shows how the interactions between indigenous cultures and European influences have created entirely new identities.
The last few decades have given rise to an electrifying movement of Native American activism, scholarship, and creative work challenging five hundred years of U.S. colonization of Native lands. Indigenous communities are envisioning and building their nations and are making decolonial strides toward regaining power from colonial forces.
The Navajo Nation is among the many Native nations in the United States pushing back. In this new book, Diné author Lloyd L. Lee asks fellow Navajo scholars, writers, and community members to envision sovereignty for the Navajo Nation. He asks, (1) what is Navajo sovereignty, (2) how do various Navajo institutions exercise sovereignty, (3) what challenges does Navajo sovereignty face in the coming generations, and (4) how did individual Diné envision sovereignty?
Contributors expand from the questions Lee lays before them to touch on how Navajo sovereignty is understood in Western law, how various institutions of the Navajo Nation exercise sovereignty, what challenges it faces in coming generations, and how individual Diné envision power, authority, and autonomy for the people.
A companion to Diné Perspectives: Revitalizing and Reclaiming Navajo Thought, each chapter offers the contributors’ individual perspectives. The book, which is organized into four parts, discusses Western law’s view of Diné sovereignty, research, activism, creativity, and community, and Navajo sovereignty in traditional education. Above all, Lee and the contributing scholars and community members call for the rethinking of Navajo sovereignty in a way more rooted in Navajo beliefs, culture, and values.
What does a move from a village in the West African rain forest to a West African community in a European city entail? What about a shift from a Greek sheep-herding community to working with evictees and housing activists in Rome and Bangkok? In The Restless Anthropologist, Alma Gottlieb brings together eight eminent scholars to recount the riveting personal and intellectual dynamics of uprooting one’s life—and decades of work—to embrace a new fieldsite.
Addressing questions of life-course, research methods, institutional support, professional networks, ethnographic models, and disciplinary paradigm shifts, the contributing writers of The Restless Anthropologist discuss the ways their earlier and later projects compare on both scholarly and personal levels, describing the circumstances of their choices and the motivations that have emboldened them to proceed, to become novices all over again. In doing so, they question some of the central expectations of their discipline, reimagining the space of the anthropological fieldsite at the heart of their scholarly lives.
Girolamo Savonarola (1452–1498), the religious reformer, preacher, and Florentine civic leader, was burned at the stake as a false prophet by the order of Pope Alexander VI. Tamar Herzig here explores the networks of Savonarola’s female followers that proliferated in the two generations following his death. Drawing on sources from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, many never before studied, transcribed, or contextualized in Savonarolan scholarship and religious history, Herzig shows how powerful public figures and clerics continued to ally themselves with these holy women long after the prophet’s death.
In their quest to stay true to their leader’s teachings, Savonarola’s female followers faced hostile superiors within their orders, local political pressures, and the deep-rooted misogynistic assumptions of the Church establishment. This unprecedented volume demonstrates how reform circles throughout the Italian peninsula each tailored Savonarola’s life and works to their particular communities’ regionally specific needs. Savonarola’s Women is an important reconstruction of women’s influence on one of the most important and controversial religious movements in premodern Europe.
H. Arnold Barton investigates Norwegian political and cultural influences in Sweden during the period of the Swedish-Norwegian dynastic union from 1814 to 1905.
Although closely related in origins, indigenous culture, language, and religion, Sweden and Norway had very different histories, resulting in strongly contrasting societies and forms of government before 1814. After a proud medieval past, Norway had come under the Danish crown in the fourteenth century and had been reduced to virtually a Danish province by the sixteenth.
In 1814, as a spin-off of the Napoleonic Wars, Denmark relinquished Norway, which became a separate kingdom, dynastically united with Sweden with its own government under a constitution independently framed that year. Disputes during the next ninety-one years caused Norway unilaterally to dissolve the tie.
Seeing the union a failure, most historians have concentrated on its conflicts. Barton, however, examines the impact of the union on internal developments, particularly in Sweden. Prior to 1814, Norway, unlike Sweden, had no constitution and only the rudiments of higher culture, yet paradoxically, Norway exerted a greater direct influence on Sweden than vice versa.
Reflecting a society lacking a native nobility, Norway’s 1814 constitution was—with the exception of that of the United States—the most democratic in the world. It became the guiding star of Swedish liberals and radicals striving to reform the antiquated system of representation in their parliament. Norway’s cultural void was filled with a stellar array of artists, writers, and musicians, led by Bjørnsjerne Børnson, Henrik Ibsen, and Edvard Grieg. From the 1850s through the late 1880s, this wave of Norwegian creativity had an immense impact on literature, art, and music in Sweden. By the 1880s, however, August Strindberg led a revolt against an exaggerated “Norvegomania” in Sweden. Barton sees this reaction as a fundamental inspiration to Sweden’s intense search for its own cultural character in the highly creative Swedish National Romanticism of the 1890s and early twentieth century.
Thirty-three illustrations of art and architecture enhance Sweden and Visions of Norway.
For many years, America cherished its image as a Golden Door for the world’s oppressed. But during the Progressive Era, mounting racial hostility along with new national legislation that imposed strict restrictions on immigration began to show the nation in a different light. The literature of this period reflects the controversy and uncertainty that abounded regarding the meaning of “American.” Literary output participated in debates about restriction, assimilation, and whether the idea of the “Melting Pot” was worth preserving. Writers advocated—and also challenged—what emerged as a radical new way of understanding the nation’s ethnic and racial identity: cultural pluralism.
From these debates came such novels as Willa Cather’s My Ántonia and Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. Henry James, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and Carl Sandburg added to the diversity of viewpoints of native born Americans while equally divergent immigrant perspectives were represented by writers such as Anzia Yezierska, Kahlil Gibran, and Claude McKay. This anthology presents the writing of these authors, among others less well known, to show the many ways literature participated in shaping the face of immigration. The volume also includes an introduction, annotations, a timeline, and historical documents that contextualize the literature.
A history of contemporary rhetoric, Visions and Revisions: Continuity and Change in Rhetoric and Composition examines the discipline’s emergence and development from the rise of new rhetoric in the late 1960s through the present. Editor James D. Williams has assembled nine essays from leading scholars to trace the origins of new rhetoric and examine current applications of genre studies, the rhetoric of science, the rhetoric of information, and the influence of liberal democracy on rhetoric in society.
Given the field’s diversity, a historical sketch cannot adopt a single perspective. Part one of Visions and Revisions therefore offers the detailed reminiscences of four pioneers in new rhetoric, while the essays in part two reflect on a variety of issues that have influenced (and continue to influence) current theory and practice. In light of the recent shift in focus of scholarly investigation toward theory, Williams’s collection contextualizes the underlying tension between theory and practice while stressing instruction of students as the most important dimension of rhetoric and composition today. Together, these chapters from some of the most influential scholars in the field provide a range of perspectives on the state of rhetoric and composition and illuminate the discipline’s development over the course of the last forty years.
The fascist Ustasha regime and its militias carried out a ruthless campaign of ethnic cleansing that killed an estimated half million Serbs, Jews, and Gypsies, and ended only with the defeat of the Axis powers in World War II.
In Visions of Annihilation, Rory Yeomans analyzes the Ustasha movement’s use of culture to appeal to radical nationalist sentiments and legitimize its genocidal policies. He shows how the movement attempted to mobilize poets, novelists, filmmakers, visual artists, and intellectuals as purveyors of propaganda and visionaries of a utopian society. Meanwhile, newspapers, radio, and speeches called for the expulsion, persecution, or elimination of “alien” and “enemy” populations to purify the nation. He describes how the dual concepts of annihilation and national regeneration were disseminated to the wider population and how they were interpreted at the grassroots level.
Yeomans examines the Ustasha movement in the context of other fascist movements in Europe. He cites their similar appeals to idealistic youth, the economically disenfranchised, racial purists, social radicals, and Catholic clericalists. Yeomans further demonstrates how fascism created rituals and practices that mimicked traditional religious faiths and celebrated martyrdom.
Visions of Annihilation chronicles the foundations of the Ustasha movement, its key actors and ideologies, and reveals the unique cultural, historical, and political conditions present in interwar Croatia that led to the rise of fascism and contributed to the cataclysmic events that tore across the continent.
Although modern cell biology is often considered to have arisen following World War II in tandem with certain technological and methodological advances—in particular, the electron microscope and cell fractionation—its origins actually date to the 1830s and the development of cytology, the scientific study of cells. By 1924, with the publication of Edmund Vincent Cowdry’s General Cytology, the discipline had stretched beyond the bounds of purely microscopic observation to include the chemical, physical, and genetic analysis of cells. Inspired by Cowdry’s classic, watershed work, this book collects contributions from cell biologists, historians, and philosophers of science to explore the history and current status of cell biology.
Despite extraordinary advances in describing both the structure and function of cells, cell biology tends to be overshadowed by molecular biology, a field that developed contemporaneously. This book remedies that unjust disparity through an investigation of cell biology’s evolution and its role in pushing forward the boundaries of biological understanding. Contributors show that modern concepts of cell organization, mechanistic explanations, epigenetics, molecular thinking, and even computational approaches all can be placed on the continuum of cell studies from cytology to cell biology and beyond. The first book in the series Convening Science: Discovery at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Visions of Cell Biology sheds new light on a century of cellular discovery.
*Visions of Electric Media* is an historical examination into the early history of television, as it was understood during the Victorian and Machine ages. How did the television that we use today develop into a functional technology? What did Victorians expect it to become? How did the 'vision' of television change once viewers could actually see pictures on a screen? We will journey through the history of 'television': from the first indications of live communications in technology and culture in the late nineteenth century, to the development of electronic televisual systems in the early twentieth century. Along the way, we will investigate the philosophy, folklore, engineering practices, and satires that went into making television a useful medium.
Since the publication of Visions of Excess in 1985, there has been an explosion of interest in the work of Georges Bataille. The French surrealist continues to be important for his groundbreaking focus on the visceral, the erotic, and the relation of society to the primeval. This collection of prewar writings remains the volume in which Batailles’s positions are most clearly, forcefully, and obsessively put forward.This book challenges the notion of a “closed economy” predicated on utility, production, and rational consumption, and develops an alternative theory that takes into account the human tendency to lose, destroy, and waste. This collection is indispensible for an understanding of the future as well as the past of current critical theory.Georges Bataille (1897-1962), a librarian by profession, was founder of the French review Critique. He is the author of several books, including Story of the Eye, The Accused Share, Erotism, and The Absence of Myth.
Every ten years, notoriously eclectic thinker Brian Morris takes a year of sabbatical and launches out into another field about which he knows nothing. In the 1980s it was botany; in the 1990s, zoology; in the 2000s, entomology. The quintessential polymath, Morris has written on his incredible breadth of interests in wide-ranging essays, with subjects ranging from boxing to deep ecology to new-age gurus.
Collected here for the first time, Visions of Freedom brings together all of Morris’s concise yet diverse essays on politics, history, and ecology written since 1989. It includes book reviews, letters, and articles in the engaging and accessible style for which Morris is known. The thinkers he deals with are as diverse as Thomas Paine to C. L. R. James, from Karl Marx to Krishnamurti, from Max Weber to Naomi Klein. He also delves into the canon of classic anarchist thinkers like Kropotkin, Bakunin, Reclus, Proudhon, and Flores Magnon.
Taking a stance against the obscurantism of contemporary academic discourse, Morris’ writings demonstrate an interdisciplinary approach that moves seamlessly between topics, developing practical connections between scholarly debates and the pressing social, ecological and political issues of our times.
The forces of globalization have transformed literary studies in America, and not for the better. The detailed critical reading of artistic texts has been replaced by newly minted catchphrases describing widely divergent snippets and anecdotes—deemed mere documents—regardless of the critic’s expertise in the appropriate languages and cultures. Visions of Global America and the Future of Critical Reading by Daniel T. O’Hara traces the origin of this global approach to Emerson. But it also demonstrates another, tragic tradition of vision from Henry James that counters the Emersonian global imagination with the hard realities of being human. Building on this tradition, on Lacan’s insights into the Real, and on Badiou’s original theory of truth, O’Hara points to how we can, and should, reground literary study in critical reading.
In Emerson’s classic essay “Experience” (1844), America appears in and as a symptom of the critic’s self-making that sacrifices the power of love to this visionary project—a literary version of the American self-made man. O’Hara rescues critical reading using James’s late work, especially The Golden Bowl (1904), and builds on this vision with examinations of texts by St. Paul, Emerson, Wallace Stevens, James Purdy, John Cheever, James Baldwin, John Ashbery, and others.
Gardeners of today take for granted the many varieties of geraniums, narcissi, marigolds, roses, and other beloved flowers for their gardens. Few give any thought at all to how this incredible abundance came to be or to the people who spent a good part of their lives creating it. These breeders once had prosperous businesses and were important figures in their communities but are only memories now. They also could be cranky and quirky.
In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, new and exotic species were arriving in Europe and the United States from all over the world, and these plants often captured the imaginations of the unlikeliest of men, from aristocratic collectors to gruff gardeners who hardly thought of themselves as artists. But whatever their backgrounds, they all shared a quality of mind that led them to ask “What if?” and to use their imagination and skills to answer that question themselves. The newest rose from China was small and light pink, but what if it were larger and came in more colors? Lilac was very nice in its way, but what if its blossoms were double and frilly?
While there are many books about plant collectors and explorers, there are none about plant breeders. Drawing from libraries, archives, and the recollections of family members, horticultural historian Judith M. Taylor traces the lives of prominent cultivators in the context of the scientific discoveries and changing tastes of their times. Visions of Loveliness is international in scope, profiling plant breeders from many countries—for example, China and the former East Germany—whose work may be unknown to the Anglophone reader.
In addition to chronicling the lives of breeders, the author also includes chapters on the history behind the plants by genus, from shrubs and flowering trees to herbaceous plants.
Depictions of sex, violence, and crime abound in many of today's movies, sometimes making it seem that the idyllic life has vanished-even from our imaginations. But as shown in this unique book, paradise has not always been lost. For many years, depictions of heaven, earthly paradises, and utopias were common in popular films.
Illustrated throughout with intriguing, rare stills and organized to provide historical context, Visions of Paradise surveys a huge array of films that have offered us glimpses of life free from strife, devoid of pain and privation, and full of harmony. In films such as Moana, White Shadows in the South Seas, The Green Pastures, Heaven Can Wait, The Enchanted Forest, The Bishop's Wife, Carousel, Bikini Beach, and Elvira Madigan, characters and the audience partake in a vision of personal freedom and safety-a zone of privilege and protection that transcends the demands of daily existence.
Many of the films discussed are from the 1960s-perhaps the most edenic decade in contemporary cinema, when everything seemed possible and radical change was taken for granted. As Dixon makes clear, however, these films have not disappeared with the dreams of a generation; they continue to resonate today, offering a tonic to the darker visions that have replaced them.
Images of poverty shape the debate surrounding it. In 1996, then President Bill Clinton signed welfare reform legislation repealing the principal federal program providing monetary assistance to poor families, Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). With the president's signature this originally non-controversial program became the only title of the 1935 Social Security Act to be repealed. The legislation culminated a retrenchment era in welfare policy beginning in the early 1980s.
To understand completely the welfare policy debates of the last half of the 20th Century, the various images of poor people that were present must be considered. Visions of Poverty explores these images and the policy debates of the retrenchment era, recounting the ways in which images of the poor appeared in these debates, relaying shifts in images that took place over time, and revealing how images functioned in policy debates to advantage some positions and disadvantage others. Looking to the future, Visions of Poverty demonstrates that any future policy agenda must first come to terms with the vivid, disabling images of the poor that continue to circulate. In debating future reforms, participants-whose ranks should include potential recipients-ought to imagine poor people anew.
This ground breaking study in policymaking and cultural imagination will be of particular interest to scholars in rhetorical studies, political science, history, and public policy.
With all the heated debates around religion and homosexuality today, it might be hard to see the two as anything but antagonistic. But in this book, Dominic Janes reveals the opposite: Catholic forms of Christianity, he explains, played a key role in the evolution of the culture and visual expression of homosexuality and male same-sex desire in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He explores this relationship through the idea of queer martyrdom—closeted queer servitude to Christ—a concept that allowed a certain degree of latitude for the development of same-sex desire.
Janes finds the beginnings of queer martyrdom in the nineteenth-century Church of England and the controversies over Cardinal John Henry Newman’s sexuality. He then considers how liturgical expression of queer desire in the Victorian Eucharist provided inspiration for artists looking to communicate their own feelings of sexual deviance. After looking at Victorian monasteries as queer families, he analyzes how the Biblical story of David and Jonathan could be used to create forms of same-sex partnerships. Finally, he delves into how artists and writers employed ecclesiastical material culture to further queer self-expression, concluding with studies of Oscar Wilde and Derek Jarman that illustrate both the limitations and ongoing significance of Christianity as an inspiration for expressions of homoerotic desire.
Providing historical context to help us reevaluate the current furor over homosexuality in the Church, this fascinating book brings to light the myriad ways that modern churches and openly gay men and women can learn from the wealth of each other’s cultural and spiritual experience.
Visions of Savage Paradise is the first major book-length study of the Dutch artist Albert Eckhout to be published since 1938. This book, which draws extensively on the author’s doctoral dissertation, examines the fascinating works of art produced by Eckhout while he was court painter in Dutch Brazil to the German count Johan Maurits van Nassau-Siegen.Johan Maurits, who was colonial governor from 1637-1644 of the Dutch West India Company’s Brazilian colony, supported the study and representation of natural history as part of a program to document the different peoples and natural resources present in the colony. As part of this project, Eckhout created life-size paintings of Amerindians, Africans, and peoples of mixed “racial” background for display in Vrijburg, the governor’s palace. He also made still-life paintings and hundreds of chalk sketches and oil studies on paper of the “savage”peoples, plants, and animals of his new Brazilian home.In this study, the author provides a careful analysis of these works of art, framing them with a discussion of contemporary artistic practices in the Dutch Republic. Nonetheless, the primary focus of this book is the function of these works within their original colonial context. As the author makes clear, the creation, use, and display of the Brazilian paintings and drawings by Albert Eckhout strengthened Johan Maurits’s position as a colonial and cultural leader.This work will not only be of interest to students and scholars of seventeenth-century Dutch art, but it will also be an important resource for those interested in visual anthropology and the history of the WIC.
The first half of the nineteenth century witnessed an extraordinary transformation in British political, literary, and intellectual life. There was widespread social unrest, and debates raged regarding education, the lives of the working class, and the new industrial, machine-governed world. At the same time, modern science emerged in Europe in more or less its current form, as new disciplines and revolutionary concepts, including evolution and the vastness of geologic time, began to take shape.
In Visions of Science, James A. Secord offers a new way to capture this unique moment of change. He explores seven key books—among them Charles Babbage’s Reflections on the Decline of Science, Charles Lyell’s Principles ofGeology, Mary Somerville’s Connexion of the Physical Sciences, and Thomas Carlyle’s Sartor Resartus—and shows how literature that reflects on the wider meaning of science can be revelatory when granted the kind of close reading usually reserved for fiction and poetry. These books considered the meanings of science and its place in modern life, looking to the future, coordinating and connecting the sciences, and forging knowledge that would be appropriate for the new age. Their aim was often philosophical, but Secord shows it was just as often imaginative, projective, and practical: to suggest not only how to think about the natural world but also to indicate modes of action and potential consequences in an era of unparalleled change.
Visions of Science opens our eyes to how genteel ladies, working men, and the literary elite responded to these remarkable works. It reveals the importance of understanding the physical qualities of books and the key role of printers and publishers, from factories pouring out cheap compendia to fashionable publishing houses in London’s West End. Secord’s vivid account takes us to the heart of an information revolution that was to have profound consequences for the making of the modern world.
The book of Genesis records the fiery fate of Sodom and Gomorrah—a storm of fire and brimstone was sent from heaven and, for the wickedness of the people, God destroyed the cities “and all the plains, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground.” According to many Protestant theologians and commentators, one of the Sodomites’ many crimes was homoerotic excess.
In Visions of Sodom, H. G. Cocks examines the many different ways in which the story of Sodom’s destruction provided a template for understanding homoerotic desire and behaviour in Britain between the Reformation and the nineteenth century. Sodom was not only a marker of sexual sins, but also the epitome of false—usually Catholic—religion, an exemplar of the iniquitous city, a foreshadowing of the world’s fiery end, an epitome of divine and earthly punishment, and an actual place that could be searched for and discovered. Visions of Sodom investigates each of these ways of reading Sodom’s annihilation in the three hundred years after the Reformation. The centrality of scripture to Protestant faith meant that Sodom’s demise provided a powerful origin myth of homoerotic desire and sexual excess, one that persisted across centuries, and retains an apocalyptic echo in the religious fundamentalism of our own time.
Sor María de Agreda (1602-65) was a Spanish nun and visionary who is best known as the author of the widely read biography of the Virgin Mary, The Mystical City of God, and as the missionary who "bilocated" to the American Southwest, reportedly appearing to Indians there without ever leaving Spain. Her role as advisor to King Philip IV contributed further to her legend.
Clark Colahan now offers the first major study of Sor María's writings, including translations of two previously unpublished works: Face of the Earth and Map of the Spheres and the first half of her Report to Father Manero, in which she reflects on her bilocation.
The most comprehensive study ever undertaken of the musical instruments of native people in Northeastern North America, Visions of Sound focuses on interpretations by elders and consultants from Iroquois, Wabanati, Innuat, and Anishnabek communities. Beverley Diamond, M. Sam Cronk, and Franziska von Rosen present these instruments in a theoretically innovative setting organized around such abstract themes as complementarity, twinness, and relationship. As sources of metaphor—in both sound and image—instruments are interpreted within a framework that regards meaning as "emergent" and that challenges a number of previous ethnographic descriptions. Finally, the association between sound and "motion"—an association that illuminates the unity of music and dance and the life cycles of individual musical instruments—is explored.
Featuring over two hundred photographs of instruments, dialogues among the coauthors, numerous interviews with individual music makers, and an appended catalogue of over seven hundred instrument descriptions, this is an important book for all ethnomusicologists and students of Native American culture as well as general readers interested in Native American mythology and religious life.
In Visions of the Black Belt, Robin McDonald and Valerie Pope Burnes offer a richly illustrated tour of the Black Belt, the fertile arc that represents the cultural efflorescence of Alabama’s heartland. Like knowledgeable friends, McDonald and Burnes guide readers through the Black Belt’s towns and architecture and introduce the region’s great panoply of citizens, farmers, craftspeople, cooks, writers, and musicians.
A constellation of Black Belt towns arose during Alabama’s territorial decades, communities like Selma, Camden, Eutaw, Tuskegee, Greenville, and many more. Visions of the Black Belt recounts their stories and others, such as Demopolis’s founding by exiles from Napoleon’s France. As an escarpment of clouds scuds across an indigo sky, the ruins of Alabama’s lost capital of Cahaba reveal the secrets of its lost squares. Also on this picturesque tour are the Black Belt’s homes, from artless cabins wreathed in fern to ozymandian manses wrapped by stately columns, such as Kirkwood and Reverie.
Among the emblematic houses of worship lovingly photographed in Visions of the Black Belt is Prairieville’s St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, noted for its “carpenter gothic” style. Also reflecting the region’s history of faith are poignant graveyards such as Greenville’s Pioneer Cemetery with its homespun memorials of seashell-and-concrete and the elegant marbles clad in ebon lichen of Selma's Live Oak Cemetery.
In photos and text, McDonald and Burnes bring to life the layers of history that shaped the Black Belt’s tastes, sounds, and colors. Their gastronomic discoveries include the picant crawfish of the Faunsdale Bar & Grill and GainesRidge Dining Club’s famed Black Bottom pie. They bring the sounds of the Black Belt to life by presenting a wide range of musicians and musical events, from bona fide blues and soul masters to Eutaw’s Black Belt Roots Festival.
Including two maps and more than 370 full-color photographs, Visions of the Black Belt offers a timeless message of faith, determination, and the rich simplicity of living in harmony with the rhythms of the land and nature.
Published in Cooperation with the Black Belt Treasures Cultural Arts Center, Camden, Alabama
The Sheik. Pépé le Moko. Casablanca. Aladdin. Some of the most popular and frequently discussed titles in movie history are imbued with orientalism, the politically-charged way in which western artists have represented gender, race, and ethnicity in the cultures of North Africa and Asia. This is the first anthology to address and highlight orientalism in film from pre-cinema fascinations with Egyptian culture through the "Whole New World" of Aladdin. Eleven illuminating and well-illustrated essays utilize the insights of interdisciplinary cultural studies, psychoanalysis, feminism, and genre criticism. Other films discussed includeThe Letter, Caesar and Cleopatra, Lawrence of Arabia, Indochine, and several films of France's cinéma colonial.
Visions of the Emerald City is an absorbing historical analysis of how Mexicans living in Oaxaca City experienced “modernity” during the lengthy “Order and Progress” dictatorship of Porfirio Díaz (1876–1911). Renowned as the Emerald City (for its many buildings made of green cantera stone), Oaxaca City was not only the economic, political, and cultural capital of the state of Oaxaca but also a vital commercial hub for all of southern Mexico. As such, it was a showcase for many of Díaz’s modernizing and state-building projects. Drawing on in-depth research in archives in Oaxaca, Mexico City, and the United States, Mark Overmyer-Velázquez describes how Oaxacans, both elites and commoners, crafted and manipulated practices of tradition and modernity to define themselves and their city as integral parts of a modern Mexico.
Incorporating a nuanced understanding of visual culture into his analysis, Overmyer-Velázquez shows how ideas of modernity figured in Oaxacans’ ideologies of class, race, gender, sexuality, and religion and how they were expressed in Oaxaca City’s streets, plazas, buildings, newspapers, and public rituals. He pays particular attention to the roles of national and regional elites, the Catholic church, and popular groups—such as Oaxaca City’s madams and prostitutes—in shaping the discourses and practices of modernity. At the same time, he illuminates the dynamic interplay between these groups. Ultimately, this well-illustrated history provides insight into provincial life in pre-Revolutionary Mexico and challenges any easy distinctions between the center and the periphery or modernity and tradition.
This is the first study to bring together all twenty-nine extant copies of the medieval Commentary on the Apocalypse, which was originally written by Spanish monk Beatus of Liébana. John Williams, a renowned expert on the Commentary, shares a lifetime of study and offers new insights on these strikingly illustrated manuscripts. As he shows, the Commentary responded to differing monastic needs within the shifting context of the Middle Ages. Of special interest is a discussion of the recently discovered Geneva copy: one of only three commentaries to be written outside of the Iberian Peninsula, this manuscript shows both close affinities to the Spanish model and fascinating deviations from it in terms of its script and style of illustrations.
Historians recognize the cultural centrality of the newspaper press in Britain, yet very little has been published regarding competing historical understandings of the press and its proper role in British society.
In Visions of the Press in Britain, 1850-1950, Mark Hampton argues that qualities expected of the contemporary British press--lively writing, speed, impartiality, depth, and the ability to topple corrupt governments by informing readers--are not obvious attributes of journalism but derive from more than a century of debate. He analyzes the various historical conceptions of the British press that helped to create its modern role, and demonstrates that these conceptions were intimately involved in the emergence of mass democracy in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Hampton surveys a diversity of sources--Parliamentary speeches and commissions, books, pamphlets, periodicals and select private correspondence--in order to identify how governmental elites, the educated public, professional journalists, and industry moguls characterized the political and cultural function of the press. The resulting blend of cultural history and media sociology demonstrates how once optimistic visions of the press have given way to more pessimistic contemporary views about the power of the mass media.
With clarity and panache, this book shows that many competing conceptions continued to influence twentieth-century understandings of the press but did not remain satisfactory in new political, cultural, and media environments. Visions of the Press in Britain, 1850-1950 provides a rich tapestry against which to understand the contemporary realities of journalism, democracy, and mass media.
Don Levine moves from the origins of systematic knowledge in ancient Greece to the present day to present an account that is at once a history of the social science enterprise and an introduction to the cornerstone works of Western social thought.
"Visions" has three meanings, each of which corresponds to a part of the book. In Part 1, Levine presents the ways previous sociologists have rendered accounts of their discipline, as a series of narratives—or "life stories"—that build upon each other, generation to generation, a succession of efforts to envisage a coherent past for the sake of a purposive present.
In Part 2, the heart of the book, Levine offers his own narrative, reconnecting centuries of voices into a richly textured dialogue among the varied strands of the sociological tradition: Hellenic, British, French, German, Marxian, Italian, and American. Here, in a tour de force of clarity and conciseness, he tracks the formation of the sociological imagination through a series of conversations across generations. From classic philosophy to pragmatism, Aristotle to W. I. Thomas, Levine maps the web of visionary statements—confrontations and oppositions—from which social science has grown.
At the same time, this is much more than an expert synthesis of social theory. Throughout each stage, Levine demonstrates social knowledge has grown in response to three recurring questions: How shall we live? What makes humans moral creatures? How do we understand the world? He anchors the creation of social knowledge to ethical foundations, and shows for the first time how differences in those foundations disposed the shapers of modern social science—among them, Marshall and Spencer, Comte and Durkheim, Simmel and Weber, Marx and Mosca, Dewey and Park—to proceed in vastly different ways.
In Part 3, Levine offers a vision of the contemporary scene, setting the crisis of fragmentation in social sciences against the fragmentation of experience and community. By reconstructing the history of social thought as a series of fundamentally moral engagements with common themes, he suggests new uses for sociology's intellectual resources: not only as insight about the nature of modernity, but also as a model of mutually respectful communication in an increasingly fractious world.
Vienna, with its stunning architecture and unforgettable streetscape, has long provided a backdrop for filmmakers. Visions of Vienna offers a close look at how directors such as Erich von Stroheim, Ernst Lubitsch, and Max Ophüls made use of the city, and how the nostalgic glorification of the Habsburg era can be seen as directly tied to crucial issues of modernity. Films set in Vienna, Alexandra Seibel shows, persistently articulate the experience of displacement due to emigration, changing gender relations and anti-feminism, class distinction, and anti-Semitism, themes that run counter to the ongoing mystification of Vienna as the incarnation of "waltz dreams" and schmaltz.
Nazi Germany’s book burnings, its campaign against “degenerate art,” and its persecution of experimental artists pushed the avant garde to the brink of extinction. How the avant-garde came back, finding a new purpose in the wake of the war, is the subject of Visions of Violence.
An extreme faction of aesthetic modernity intent on bulldozing contemporary life, the avant-garde has regularly employed visions of violence in their push for societal and cultural renewal. But in the shadow of unparalleled war and genocide, such aesthetic violence lost its force. This book explores the reconfiguration of the avant-garde in response to the violent transformation of European reality. Citing the emergence of independent avant-garde practitioners in the place of the previous collective, Richard Langston considers six individual exemplars of Germany’s post-fascist avant-garde—works that span the last six decades: painter, writer, and filmmaker Peter Weiss’s appropriation of French surrealism in the fifties; writer Dieter Wellershoff’s coterie of “new realists”; artist Wolf Vostell’s mediation and conflation of the experiences of the Auschwitz trials and the Vietnam War; poet and novelist Dieter Brinkmann’s collages from the seventies; the multimedia displacements of Alexander Kluge; and the performative engagements of dramatists Christoph Schlingensief and Rene Pollesch.
Taking stock of the evolution of Germany’s post-fascist avant-gardes, Langston’s book shows how the movement from Weiss to Pollesch exhibits the problems that both modernity and postmodernity pose for an aesthetic engagement of Germany’s violent past.
For Americans World War II was “a good war,” a war that was worth fighting. Even as the conflict was underway, a myriad of both fictional and nonfictional books began to appear examining one or another of the raging battles. These essays examine some of the best literature and popular culture of World War II. Many of the studies focus on women, several are about children, and all concern themselves with the ways that the war changed lives. While many of the contributors concern themselves with the United States, there are essays about Great Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Poland, Russia, and Japan.
This book introduces to a larger audience the work of a group of Mexican writers whose work reflects the stimulus of the “boom” of the 1960s, especially in the experimental nueva novella.
Duncan views the work of six writers in the context of more well known writers of the period (Ruflo, Fuentes, and Del Paso), and concludes with a chapter on other recent innovators in Mexican literature. Despite their diversity, these texts share many common features, and unlike social realism, the works are not openly political, but at the same time they question assumptions about reality itself-and the relation of fiction to truth.
A much-needed contribution to the expanding interest in the history of travel and travel writing, Voyages and Visions is the first attempt to sketch a cultural history of travel from the sixteenth century to the present day. The essays address the theme of travel as a historical, literary and imaginative process, focusing on significant episodes and encounters in world history.
The contributors to this collection include historians of art and of science, anthropologists, literary critics and mainstream cultural historians. Their essays encompass a challenging range of subjects, including the explorations of South America, India and Mexico; mountaineering in the Himalayas; space travel; science fiction; and American post-war travel fiction. Voyages and Visions is truly interdisciplinary, and essential reading for anyone interested in travel writing.
With essays by Kasia Boddy, Michael Bravo, Peter Burke, Melissa Calaresu, Jesus Maria Carillo Castillo, Peter Hansen, Edward James, Nigel Leask, Joan-Pau Rubies and Wes Williams.