‘The NY Times’ on Electronic Resources in the Humanities

Posted in resources by Editor on November 18, 2010

In yesterday’s NY Times, Patricia Cohen addresses the rise of digital research tools, including Mapping the Republic of Letters:

Patricia Cohen, “Digital Keys for Unlocking the Humanities’ Riches,” The New York Times (16 November 2010)

A history of the humanities in the 20th century could be chronicled in “isms” — formalism, Freudianism, structuralism, postcolonialism — grand intellectual cathedrals from which assorted interpretations of literature, politics and culture spread. The next big idea in language, history and the arts? Data.

Members of a new generation of digitally savvy humanists argue it is time to stop looking for inspiration in the next political or philosophical “ism” and start exploring how technology is changing our understanding of the liberal arts. This latest frontier is about method, they say, using powerful technologies and vast stores of digitized materials that previous humanities scholars did not have. . . .

Last year the National Endowment for the Humanities spent $2 million on digital projects. One of the endowment’s grantees is Dan Edelstein, an associate professor of French and Italian at Stanford University who is charting the flow of ideas during the Enlightenment. The era’s great thinkers — Locke, Newton, Voltaire — exchanged tens of thousands of letters; Voltaire alone wrote more than 18,000. . . .

The full article is available here»

Exhibition: Rowlandson on Pleasures and Pursuits

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on November 18, 2010

From The Block Museum:

Thomas Rowlandson: Pleasures and Pursuits in Georgian England
The Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, 14 January — 13 March 2011
The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY, 8 April — 11 June 2011

Curated by Patricia Phagan

Thomas Rowlandson, “Progress of Gallantry, or Stolen Kisses Sweetest,” 1814, etching with stipple, in black ink with watercolor on cream wove paper (Yale University: Lewis Walpole Library)

Artist Thomas Rowlandson (1757–1827) depicted high society and politics, encounters on the street, camaraderie in clubs and taverns, outdoor entertainments, musings about art, drama, and dance, and romantic and sexual tangles. In other words, the social life of Georgian England. One of the most popular caricaturists of his time, Rowlandson’s work was noted for lighthearted, deft humor and the unmatched flowing line of his drawing.

Organized by the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center at Vassar College, Thomas Rowlandson: Pleasures and Pursuits in Georgian England presents more than 70 of the artist’s prints, drawings, watercolors, and illustrated books. The exhibition is curated by Patricia Phagan, the Philip and Lynn Straus Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center. The first major exhibition of Rowlandson’s work in the United States in 20 years, it will be accompanied by a full-color 184-page catalogue.

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Description of the catalogue, from the publisher’s website:

Patricia Phagan, Vic Gatrell, and Amelia Rauser, Thomas Rowlandson: Pleasures and Pursuits in Georgian England (London: D. Giles Limited, 2011), 184 pages, ISBN: 9781904832782.

Thomas Rowlandson: Pleasures and Pursuits in Georgian England is a completely new illustrated volume which presents 72 watercolours, drawings, prints, and illustrated books to reassess the legacy of this renowned 18th-century satirist. Published in February 2011 by D. Giles Limited in association with the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, it accompanies the first major exhibition of Rowlandson’s work in North America for 20 years, and reflects the growing emphasis on the social and political context of the satirical art of the 18th- and early 19th-centuries. In so doing, it rescues Rowlandson from what co-author Vic Gatrell calls “the immense condescension of posterity.” This catalogue explores Rowlandson’s unique perspective on Georgian social life, and the crossing of class boundaries.

With heavy-handed humour and a low subject matter, the work of Thomas Rowlandson (1757–1827) provides an invaluable insight into the workings and mentality of late Georgian society. He was quite simply a product of his times, who relished recording the street life of London and whose drawings and etchings reveal an attraction to repulsive visions of wickedness and hardship, whilst maintaining a high degree of humanity. (more…)

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