New Book | Architecture at the End of the Earth

Posted in books by Editor on January 31, 2016

From Duke UP:

William Craft Brumfield, Architecture at the End of the Earth: Photographing the Russian North (Duke University Press, 2015), 256 pages, ISBN: 978-0822359067, $40.

514ki0DtxWL._SX373_BO1,204,203,200_Carpeted in boreal forests, dotted with lakes, cut by rivers, and straddling the Arctic Circle, the region surrounding the White Sea, which is known as the Russian North, is sparsely populated and immensely isolated. It is also the home to architectural marvels, as many of the original wooden and brick churches and homes in the region’s ancient villages and towns still stand. Featuring nearly two hundred full color photographs of these beautiful centuries-old structures, Architecture at the End of the Earth is the most recent addition to William Craft Brumfield’s ongoing project to photographically document all aspects of Russian architecture.

The architectural masterpieces Brumfield photographed are diverse: they range from humble chapels to grand cathedrals, buildings that are either dilapidated or well cared for, and structures repurposed during the Soviet era. Included are onion-domed wooden churches such as the Church of the Dormition, built in 1674 in Varzuga; the massive walled Transfiguration Monastery on Great Solovetsky Island, which dates to the mid-1550s; the Ferapontov-Nativity Monastery’s frescoes, painted in 1502 by Dionisy, one of Russia’s greatest medieval painters; nineteenth-century log houses, both rustic and ornate; and the Cathedral of St. Sophia in Vologda, which was commissioned by Ivan the Terrible in the 1560s. The text that introduces the photographs outlines the region’s significance to Russian history and culture.

Brumfield is challenged by the immense difficulty of accessing the Russian North, and recounts traversing sketchy roads, crossing silt-clogged rivers on barges and ferries, improvising travel arrangements, being delayed by severe snowstorms, and seeing the region from the air aboard the small planes he needs to reach remote areas.

The buildings Brumfield photographed, some of which lie in near ruin, are at constant risk due to local indifference and vandalism, a lack of maintenance funds, clumsy restorations, or changes in local and national priorities. Brumfield is concerned with their futures and hopes that the region’s beautiful and vulnerable achievements of master Russian carpenters will be preserved. Architecture at the End of the Earth is at once an art book, a travel guide, and a personal document about the discovery of this bleak but beautiful region of Russia that most readers will see here for the first time.

William Craft Brumfield is Professor of Slavic Studies at Tulane University. Brumfield, who began photographing Russia in 1970, is the foremost authority in the West on Russian architecture. He is the author, editor, and photographer of numerous books, including Lost Russia: Photographing the Ruins of Russian Architecture, also published by Duke University Press. Brumfield is the recipient of a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship and was a Fellow at the National Humanities Center. In 2002 he was elected to the State Russian Academy of Architecture and Construction Sciences, and in 2006 he was elected to the Russian Academy of Fine Arts. He is also the 2014 recipient of the D. S. Likhachev Prize for Outstanding Contributions to the Preservation of the Cultural Heritage of Russia. Brumfield’s photographs of Russian architecture have been exhibited at numerous galleries and museums and are part of the Image Collections at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Call for Articles | Material Fictions, Special Issue of ECF

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on January 31, 2016

From the Call for Articles:

Material Fictions
Special Issue of Eighteenth-Century Fiction, proposed for Autumn 2018

Completed manuscripts due by 15 July 2017

Edited by Eugenia Zuroski Jenkins and Michael Yonan

Liotard_JE_Tea_Set-300x216ECF invites manuscripts exploring material cultures of the long eighteenth century and the fictions crafted in and through objects, built environments, and other material entities. How did eighteenth-century things tell stories? How did the design of objects engender particular narratives, whether personal, political, or social? Did things collaborate with texts to generate broader fictions, or did they posit counter-fictions to written literature? What kinds of methodologies might we cultivate to ‘read’ eighteenth-century material culture, and what insight might such readings yield? Conversely, what might the material thing’s resistance to being ‘read’ tell us about the methods of interpretation and analysis we bring to the eighteenth century? This special issue will be an opportunity to explore the intersections between literary and cultural studies, art history, anthropology, and other fields. It is an opportunity to ask what the eighteenth century specifically can bring to the larger interdisciplinary project of material culture studies.

Deadline for manuscripts: 15 July 2017
Manuscripts: 6,000–8,000 words, French or English
Publication of this special issue is proposed for the autumn of 2018.
Editors Eugenia Zuroski Jenkins, McMaster University, and Michael Yonan, University of Missouri.

Eighteenth-Century Fiction, ecf@mcmaster.ca

En français:

Les Fictions matérielles

La rédaction sollicite des articles pour un numéro spécial consacré aux cultures matérielles du XVIIIe siècle et aux fictions conçues dans et à travers les objets, les environnements bâtis et d’autres entités matérielles. Au XVIIIe siècle, comment les objets ont-ils raconté des histoires? Comment la conception d’objets a-t-elle engendré des récits particuliers, qu’ils soient personnels, politiques ou sociaux? Comment les objets collaborent-ils à la composition textuelle générant des fictions plus larges, ou introduisant de la contre-fictions au sein de la littérature? Quels types de méthodologies peut-on cultiver (ou non) à la « lecture » la culture matérielle du XVIIIe siècle, et que pourraient apporter ces idées à notre lecture? Ce numéro spécial sera l’occasion d’explorer les intersections entre les études littéraires et culturelles, l’histoire de l’art, l’anthropologie, et d’autres domaines. C’est l’occasion de demander comment le XVIIIe siècle peut contribuer au plus grand projet interdisciplinaire d’études de la culture matérielle. Ce numéro est ouvert à la discussion de toutes sortes de représentations des cultures matérielles et ne se limite pas à la fiction narrative.

La date limite est le 15 juillet 2017 (6 000 – 8 000 mots).
La publication est proposée pour l’automne 2018.
Les rédacteurs: Eugenia Zuroski Jenkins de l’Université McMaster et Michael Yonan de l’Université de Missouri.

Eighteenth-Century Fiction, ecf@mcmaster.ca