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The Picturesque - Literary Sources and Documents (Hardcover)
The Picturesque - Literary Sources and Documents (Hardcover): Malcolm Andrews

The Picturesque - Literary Sources and Documents (Hardcover)

Malcolm Andrews

Series: Literary & Cultural Movements: Sources & Documents S.

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Each title in the "Literary and Cultural Movements: Sources and Documents" series concentrates on a significant cultural and literary area or period and offers the student an extensive range of primary source and documentary material which together represents a significant research resource. The material presented consists of original source material from the period or subject and includes prefaces, letters, essays and critical texts from the period as well as related material - especially complete texts. In addition, each set includes a substantial introductory essay placing the material in context; a chronology of the period or movement noting texts and figures as well as relating material to relevant references elsewhere; a bibliography of the texts associated with the period or movement; an extensive critical bibliography; and biographical notes on significant figures and editorial notes on the source material. The aim of these volumes is to provide a wide selection of texts which bear upon the development of the idea of "The Picturesque in 18th and 19th century Britain. With one or two exceptions only, all writers here represented are British and the object of their less abstract reflections is the nature of British landscapes, although it should be recognized that many of these commentators developed their connoisseurship on the Grand tour of Europe, where a capacity for the aesthetic evaluation of landscape was regarded as the mark of a cultivated sensibility. "The Picturesque" developed as a mode of landscape appraisal in the middle and later 18th century. It assumes for many the status of a science. It acquired its own technical jargon of "side-screens", "off-skips", three "distances" etc. By the late 18th century, the fashion for scenic tourism to the Lake district, North Wales, and the Scottish Highlands, was well developed. The Tourists were well versed in the vocabulary of the "Picturesque", and under its prescriptive influence would refine their water-colour sketches and journal entries to fit a series of landscape formulae. The topic of the "Picturesque" was much debated, both informally in the journals and correspondence of these tourists and, more formally, in a number of "essays" in the 1790s - notably by William Giopin and Uvedale Price. Both debates are extensively represented in this volume. The vogue for the "Picturesque" became an object of ridicule early in the 19th century: in the novels of Jane Austen and Peacock and in the satirical travels of Dr. Syntax. These, too, are featured. In the victorian period, a more serious reaction against the "Picturesque" developed, chiefly in the writings of John Ruskin who tried to introduce a stronger ethical element into an aesthetic that concentrated with such relish on scenes of poverty and dilapidation. The volumes close in about 1870 when Ruskin's revisionist work on the "Picturesque" had largely been completed. But this is not the end of the story. The "Picturesque" has a remarkable tenacity and adaptability, even to the present day. Although the word itself no longer excites the controversy that it did in the later 18th century, our attitudes to the natural landscape are still coloured by it. These volumes provide the material for re-examining what may be regarded as the roots of our modern attitudes towards natural scenery.


Imprint: Helm Information
Country of origin: United Kingdom
Series: Literary & Cultural Movements: Sources & Documents S.
Release date: May 1994
Authors: Malcolm Andrews
Dimensions: 234 x 156mm (L x W)
Format: Hardcover
Volumes: 3
Pages: 1300
ISBN-13: 978-1-873403-10-5
Categories: Books > Language & Literature > Literature: texts > Collections & anthologies of various literary forms
Books > Language & Literature > Literature: history & criticism > Literary studies > General
Books > Reference & Interdisciplinary > Interdisciplinary studies > Cultural studies > General
LSN: 1-873403-10-0
Barcode: 9781873403105

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