Verbal and Visual Banner

The Verbal and the Visual
in Nineteenth-Century Culture

Institute of English Studies
Senate House, University of London
23-24 June 2006



Workshop 1: Working with Glass
Isobel Armstrong (Birkbeck, University of London): 'From Verbal to Visual in "The Day at a Factory": How Factory Tourists put what they saw into Words'
From visual to verbal: how do you describe, compellingly, in words, an unfamiliar work process to a popular audience? This is the problem that faced the factory tourism 'visit to a factory' genre of the nineteenth century. In this workshop we will look at the morphology of three or four visits to glass factories (Household Words, Illustrated Exhibitor, The Leisure Hour), to see how they put work into words, particularly the crisis of the furnace, and what problems this created.
Click on the links below to download the files for Workshop 1:

Charles Dickens, 'Plate Glass', Household Words (1851)
Harriet Martineau, 'Birmingham Glass Works', Household Words (1852)
'A Visit to Apsley Pellatt's Flint Glass Works', The Illustrated Exhibitor (1852)
'Birmingham and her Manufactures', The Leisure Hour (1852)

Workshop 2: Illustrated Text Online
2 a) Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (NCSE) (presented by Jim Mussell and Suzanne Paylor, Birkbeck): Periodical literature foregrounds the arbitrary division between the verbal and visual: although many periodicals were illustrated, the visual also plays a role in the spatial layout of articles, iconographic markers,  typography, mastheads, marginalia, the use of whitespace etc... Using the six titles in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition, this workshop will explore the rich histories of this material, and consider how their relationships changed over the century in the light shifting economies, developments of new technologies, and changes in reading audiences.  We invite participants to discuss with us both which aspects of these complex histories should be preserved in digital form, and the best means of doing so. To prepare to discuss the serials edition, Jim and Suzanne ask you to download and analyse these images and think about these questions for discussion.
2 b) Database of Mid-Victorian Wood-Engraved Illustrations (presented by Julia Thomas and Tim Killick, University of Wales at Cardiff). Database of Mid-Victorian Wood-Engraved Illustrations (DMVI) The DMVI project team would like to use this workshop as an opportunity to engage with some of the theoretical and practical issues surrounding both the electronic display of bimedial texts and the verbal, iconographic description of pictorial content. To prepare to discuss wood-engraved illustrations, please click here

Workshop 3: 'On curating Tate Britain's Nightmares'
Martin Myrone (Tate Britain)
Taking the exhibition Gothic Nightmares (Tate Britain, 15 February-1 May 2006) as a starting point, this workshop will discuss the 'Gothic' as a critical concept, the historical and contemporary value of 'spectacle', and the strategies, compromises and opportinities involved in presenting 'academic' contexts to the public realm in the form of an exhibition which seeks to be popular. The discussion will centre on Henry Fuseli's picture The Nightmare and three texts laying out the plan and presenting the exhibition. The first is a proposal written for internal discussion in May 2002, before the format for the show was settled. The second is a room-by-room description that was issued to the press when the show opened. The third is a further document given to the press at that time.
Click on the links below to download PDF files for Workshop 3
May 2002 Proposal

Room-by-Room Description

Press Document


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