Call for Papers: Maritime History

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on May 24, 2010

New Horizons in Maritime History
King’s College, University of Cambridge, 15-16 October 2010

Paper proposals due by 16 July 2010

New Horizons in Maritime History aims to explore the broader possibilities of maritime and oceanic history as a burgeoning field of research, bringing together researchers working in disparate areas of history with different topical and methodological allegiances in order to facilitate a discussion on the ways these fields relate to and inform maritime history, and what looking at the sea can offer the historical discipline more broadly. The conference seeks to challenge received notions about the remit of maritime history and to interrogate the ways in which it has been traditionally practiced. In particular, it seeks to move beyond nautical antiquarianism performed at or below the level of the nation-state, and highlight the intersection of maritime history with novel currents in the discipline that emphasize global continuity and transnational relationships.

Panels will be structured around fields and approaches in historical scholarship and their relationship to maritime history, exploring the problems and possibilities of these connections. Papers might highlight the maritime applications or contributions of a specific sub-field, such as economic, political, religious or intellectual history. Alternately, they might focus on specialist topics or area studies, such as the intersection of maritime history with imperial history, slavery and abolition, the Caribbean, navies and violence at sea, gender and sexuality, colonialism and decolonization, to name but a few.

To present a paper, please send a proposed title and abstract (of no more than 300 words) with a short CV to the conference organizing committee at cambridgemaritimehistory@gmail.com. Submissions from postgraduates and early- career researchers are especially welcome. The deadline for submissions is Friday, 16 July 2010. Successful applicants will be notified the following week. Those wishing to attend the conference without giving a paper are invited to register their interest with the committee. Conference organizers: Joshua Newton, Richard Blakemore, Simon Layton.

Keeping Track — New Acquisitions Blog at the Walpole Library

Posted in resources by Editor on May 23, 2010

Scholarship in the digital age of connectivity creates enormous possibilities, and yet these possibilities also pose new problems. It’s terrific that collections of visual and textual materials are increasingly available online, but knowing what’s where can be tricky. Further complicating matters is the fact that institutional collections are always adding more. Just because something wasn’t available online last summer doesn’t mean that it’s not there now. In some ways, this is just a new version of the old problem of spreading the word about new acquisitions. Fortunately, the digital age provides us with tools that could help. Listservs and blogs are ideally suited for such announcements, and Enfilade is certainly one forum for sharing these kinds of updates.

"Journey from Paris to Naples, 1769"

LWL Mss Vol 181, William Henry Bunbury

In a more focused manner, the Lewis Walpole Library hosts a blog dedicated to its own “Recent Antiquarian Acquisitions.” The posting from 11 May 2010, for instance, takes note of the travel diary of William Henry Bunbury (1750-1821), which documents his journey from Paris to Naples in 1769. Now best known for his caricatures, William was the younger brother of Sir Charles Bunbery, whose first wife was famously painted by Sir Joshua Reynolds (the portrait of Lady Sarah Sacrificing to the Graces is in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago). Of course, the Walpole Library blog becomes one more site to keep tabs on, but it would seem like a workable solution. Any thoughts?

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New Acquisition at the Folger

Posted in resources by Editor on May 22, 2010

James Northcote, "Romeo and Juliet, act V, scene III," ca. 1790

Last fall, Enfilade included a posting on Sotheby’s Old Master & Early British Paintings auction (29 October 2009), with reference to James Northcote’s painting of the tomb scene from Romeo and Juliet. Erin Blake, Curator of Art and Special Collections at the Folger Shakespeare Library, notes that the Folger acquired the picture — all 9 x 11 feet of it! Details can be found here and here.

Call for Articles: ‘JHNA’

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on May 22, 2010

The Journal of Historians of Netherlandish Art (JHNA) announces the submission deadline for its winter issue, August 1, 2010. Articles submitted by this date will be considered for publication in Winter 2010. For details, please consult the journal’s Submission Guidelines.

JHNA is an open-access, peer-reviewed journal published twice per year. Articles focus on art produced in the Netherlands (north and south) during the early modern period (c. 1400-c.1750), and in other countries and later periods as they relate to this earlier art. This includes studies of painting, sculpture, graphic arts, tapestry, architecture, and decoration, from the perspectives of art history, art conservation, museum studies, historiography, technical studies, and collecting history. Book and exhibition reviews, however, will continue to be published in the HNA Newsletter.

Old Master Drawings at the Met

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on May 21, 2010

Press release from the Met:

An Italian Journey: Drawings from the Tobey Collection, Correggio to Tiepolo
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 12 May — 15 August 2010

Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, "A Family Group," 1750s. Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, over black chalk. Sheet: 9 1/2 x 13 7/16 in. (24.1 x 34.2 cm) The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Promised Gift of David M. Tobey (TR.331.50.2007).

An Italian Journey: Drawings from the Tobey Collection, Correggio to Tiepolo presents 72 extraordinary works of the 16th through 18th centuries, from one of the preeminent collections of Italian Old Master drawings in private hands. It features masterpieces by gifted and historically important draftsmen—principally Italian masters but also artists whose careers brought them south of the Alps—among them Correggio, Parmigianino, Bernini, Poussin, Guercino, Canaletto, and Tiepolo. The drawings represent the principal centers of Italian art: Florence, Rome, Naples, Bologna, Parma, Venice, Genoa, and Milan. Their strikingly broad range of subject matter includes figure studies, historical and mythological narratives, landscapes, vedute, botanical drawings, motifs copied from or inspired by classical antiquity,
and designs for painted compositions.

Catalogue by Linda Wolk-Simon and Carmen Bambach, ISBN: 9780300155242, $50

The 16th-century Italian painter and biographer Giorgio Vasari has been credited with formulating the concept of Renaissance art in his celebrated Lives of the Most Eminent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects (1550). He also invented the practice of systematically collecting Italian drawings in compiling his Libro dei disegni, a volume comprising examples by many of the artists whose biographies he authored. From Vasari’s time until the present, such works—intimate glimpses of an artist’s imagination and creative powers at work—have held a seductive allure and an intellectual appeal for collectors and connoisseurs alike. An Italian Journey offers a unique glimpse of the myriad riches of this exceptional collection, presented to the public for the first time.

Among the many treasures of the collection on view are a recently discovered, magnificent red chalk drawing of the head of Julius Caesar by Andrea del Sarto, the leading Florentine painter of the first decades of the 16th century; a luminous study by Correggio for the figure of Eve in his great masterpiece, the painted dome of the cathedral of Parma; a sprightly pen drawing by his younger contemporary Parmigianino—hailed in his day as the spirit of the divine Raphael reborn—for one of his most important painted portraits; brilliantly rendered colored studies by the Florentine artist Jacopo Ligozzi, one depicting, with poetry and scientific precision, a plant, and another an exotic Oriental theme; a powerful study of a recumbent nude man by the towering genius of Baroque Rome, Gianlorenzo Bernini, and of a fanciful ship by his contemporary, the sculptor Alessandro Algardi, made for the pope; a rich concentration of drawings by some of the leading Bolognese painters of the 17th century, notably Guercino (who is represented by three masterful studies), Guido Reni, and Domenichino; and fine examples by the great Venetian draftsmen of the 18th century, among them Canaletto, Guardi, Piranesi, and the greatest artistic luminary of the age, Giambattista Tiepolo. (more…)

Grangerized Books

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on May 20, 2010

Extending the Book: The Art of Extra-Illustration
Folger Shakespeare Library, Washington D.C., 28 January – 25 May 2010

Curated by Erin Blake (Folger Shakespeare Library) and Stuart Sillars (University of Bergen) with LuEllen DeHaven (Folger Shakespeare Library)

Texts are never static objects, but it is rare that readers’ interactions with them are as physically evident as they are in extra-illustrated books. The concept is simple: identify significant people, places, and things in a printed text, collect pictures of them, then insert the pictures as visual annotations to the text. Extra-illustration came to prominence after the 1769 publication of James Granger’s Biographical history of England. Granger’s un-illustrated book combined thumbnail biographies with lists of portraits, and readers began to supplement their copies with actual examples of the portraits. The practice spread to other texts, and the great era of extra-illustration, or “grangerizing,” began. At its most extreme, a single volume could grow to dozens.

Shakespeare proved especially attractive to grangerizers thanks to the variety of editions available and the many portraits of historical figures, fictitious characters, and well-known actors that could be added. Many extra-illustrators went beyond portraiture to include playbills, scenic views, and even entire books; others inserted manuscript letters, original watercolors, and rare engravings, thus preserving a treasure-trove of unique material. Finished volumes range from the skilled work of professional inlayers and binders hired by wealthy collectors to self-made books of inexpensive clippings pasted onto cheap inserts. Any book owner could be an extra-illustrator.

From the beginning, extra-illustrators had to defend their “exquisite handicraft” (in the words of an 1890 proponent) against accusations of “breaking up a good book to illustrate a worse one” (in the words of an 1892 critic). This exhibition examines the art and the practice of extra-illustration, from crudely altered books to beautiful new creations.

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The Folger’s exhibition site includes more information and an intriguing sampling of images»

Call for Papers: Bloodwork

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on May 20, 2010

Bloodwork: The Politics of the Body 1500-1900
University of Maryland College Park, 6-7 May 2011

Proposals due by 15 October 2010

Conference Organizers: Kimberly Coles, Ralph Bauer, Zita Nunes, Carla L. Peterson

This conference will explore how conceptions of the blood—one of the four bodily fluids known as humors in the early modern period—permeate discourses of human difference from 1500 to 1900. “Bloodwork” begins with the assumption that the concept of “race” is still under construction and that our understanding of the term would profit through an engagement with its long, evolving, history. Specifically, it asks how fluid transactions of the body have been used in different eras and different cultures to justify existing social arrangements.

Recent scholarship has opened up the question of the continuities and discontinuities between early modern and modern rationalizations of human difference. In early modern England, “race” commonly referred to family lineage, or bloodline, and relied upon pervasive notions of what were believed to constitute the properties of blood. The anxieties anatomized in Thomas Elyot’s Boke named the Governour (1537) about the degradation of “race,” or the corruption of noble blood, describe the physical technologies by which virtue—both physical and moral—was thought to be conveyed through bloodlines. Daniel Defoe’s later satire “A True-Born Englishman” (1708) echoes this rationale for difference. The language of his poem not only insinuates the crossover of the term “race” from family lines to national groups, but also supplies evidence that both kinds of racial ideology—whether affirming social hierarchy or national superiority—rest upon the invisible qualities of the blood. In late eighteenth-century Anglo-America, Thomas Jefferson invokes such notions as “White,” “Indian,” and “Negro” blood in order to suggest an essential difference between what he calls “the races,” a difference that he sees as “fixed in nature,” thereby anticipating modern racialism.

A comparative conference such as ours, that is trans-historical and transnational and draws literary critics and historians of cultures on both sides of the Atlantic world, will make a significant contribution to this ongoing debate about the “invention” of race.

Plenary Speakers:

  • Colin Dayan (Department of English, Vanderbilt University)
  • Michael Hanchard (Department of Political Science, Johns Hopkins University)
  • Ruth Hill (Department of Spanish, Italian & Portuguese, The University of Virginia)
  • Mary Floyd-Wilson (Department of English, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)


  • How does blood rationalize bodily difference in the period in which you work?
  • How is blood used as a metaphor in your period? How is it contested?
  • How—and why—is the idea of blood transforming? How does it operate in the body?
  • What are the physical technologies of the body and how are these pressed into the service of difference? Conversely, how is the rationalization of bodily difference embedded in “scientific” discourse?
  • Is religious difference figured in cultural or somatic terms?
  • Does the body have a moral constitution?

Please submit abstracts of 500 words for complete panels (abstract plus panel descriptions), incomplete panels, or individuals papers by October 15, 2010 to: bloodwork@umd.edu.

Assessing the Digital Burney Newspaper Collection

Posted in journal articles, resources by Editor on May 19, 2010

Last October, Gale made its Burney Collection of newspapers available for a free trial through Early Modern Online Bibliography. In a recent posting at EMOB, Eleanor Shevlin summarizes an article from The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America on this digital resource:

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Ashley Marshall and Rob Hume, “The Joys, Possibilities, and Perils of the British Library’s Digital Burney Newspapers Collection,” PBSA 104:1 (2010): 5-52.

At forty-seven pages Ashley Marshall and Rob Hume’s article offers a substantive assessment of this relatively recent electronic resource for early modern studies. Early on the authors argue that “[d]igital Burney is amazing, but exploiting it fully is going to demand some serious rethinking and reorientation in both our research and our teaching (6-7). Their claim that this tool “will change the way we conduct our business” (7) possesses much merit; fulfilling digital Burney’s promise, however, will depend on far broader scholarly access than currently exists. Equally important, scholars need to acquire a firm understanding of its possible uses, search capabilities, and limitations. While Marshall and Hume’s piece cannot assist in matters of accessibility (though it could serve as support for the tool’s purchase), their essay does advance our knowledge of how this tool might be employed and how its features and limitations can best be navigated.

The article is usefully divided into five sections. . . .

The full review of the article is available here»

The Eighteenth Century in April’s ‘Burlington Magazine’

Posted in journal articles by Editor on May 18, 2010

From last month’s issue of The Burlington Magazine 152 (April 2010):

  • Ann V. Gunn, “Paul Sandby, William Pars and the Society of Dilettanti,” pp. 219-226.
  • Owen Hopkins, review of Compass and Rule: Architecture as Mathematical Practice in England by A. Gerbino and S. Johnston, pp. 250-51.
  • Robert J. Gemmett, review of William Beckford: A Bibliography by J. Millington, pp. 251-52.
  • Vanessa Brett, review of British and Continental Gold and Silver in the Ashmolean Museum by T. Schroder, p. 252.
  • Christoph Martin Vogtherr, review of the exhibition Jean Raoux, pp. 267-68.

Quilts in Milwaukee

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on May 17, 2010

Press release from the Milwaukee Art Museum:

American Quilts: Selections from the Winterthur Collection
Winterthur Museum, 10 March — 16 September 2007

Saint Louis Art Museum, 2 March — 26 May 2008
Milwaukee Art Museum, 22 May — 6 September 2010
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 9 October 2010 — 2 January 2011

Curated by Linda Eaton of Winterthur Museum

Appliqué counterpane, 1800–25. Cotton, 100 x 92 in. Courtesy, Winterthur, Museum purchase with funds provided by Mr. Samuel Pettit in memory of his wife, Sally Pettit.

One of the world’s finest collections of early American quilts will be on view at the Milwaukee Art Museum May 22 — September 6, 2010. Featuring rare surviving textiles of the late 1700s and early 1800s from Winterthur Museum & Country Estate, Delaware, American Quilts outlines America’s earliest cultural landscape in stunning detail. American Quilts features more than 40 exquisite quilts whose fabric, design, and stitching combine to provide an extraordinary visual experience. These works of art also present a wealth of new information about the lives of their makers and the world around them. Quilts make political statements, celebrate marriages, and document the early global textile trade. Close examination of these quilts show the frugal recycling of a pair of men’s wool breeches, or the special purchase of fashionable and expensive fabrics. The exhibition includes some of the finest and earliest American printed textiles, a quilted Indian palampore, and a kaleidoscopic sunburst quilt featuring over 6,700 pieces of printed cotton.

“At first, fabric itself was a status symbol reflecting wealth and worldliness,” said Mel Buchanan, assistant curator of 20th-century design. “But the technological advances of the Industrial Revolution and the establishment of an American textile industry enabled affordable fabrics to become more widely available. From this array of materials, more women could produce quilts that served as an important part of their personal, family, and community identity in a constantly changing world.”

American Quilts explores how quilts were made to commemorate life-changing events for individuals, families, or entire communities. The rare quilts on view were passed through generations and, in turn, have become beautiful repositories of history and memory that document women’s political, social, and cultural lives in the early American republic. (more…)

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