When Harriet Beecher Stowe writes in Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852) that because Tom is “the hero of our story, we must daguerreotype [him] for our readers” (ch. 4) and describes Marie St. Clare looking with a “dissatisfied air” at a “daguerreotype, clear and soft as an engraving, representing Eva and her father sitting hand in hand” (ch. 15), she nods to the evident fact that by the mid-nineteenth century new visual technologies of all kinds had proliferated. A number of recent studies have claimed that nineteenth-century texts were influenced by these rapidly evolving technologies, which included the still and moving panorama, ambrotype, stereoscope, tintype, and cyanotype, to say nothing of the rise of magazine illustration, which flourished in the 1880s and 1890s such that pictures on a page began to compete with words and stories in a sometimes uneasy alliance. Some of...
Artistic Liberties: American Literary Realism and Graphic Illustration, 1880–1905
Immersive Words: Mass Media, Visuality, and American Literature, 1839–1893
Martha J. Cutter is a professor of English and Africana studies at the University of Connecticut. She is the author of Unruly Tongue: Language and Identity in American Women’s Writing (Univ. Press of Mississippi, 1998), Lost and Found in Translation: Contemporary Ethnic American Writing and the Politics of Language Diversity (Univ. of North Carolina Press, 2005), and The Illustrated Slave: Empathy, Graphic Narrative, and the Visual Culture of the Transatlantic Abolition Movement, 1800–1852 (Univ. of Georgia Press, 2017). She is the coeditor (with Cathy Schlund-Vials) of Redrawing the Historical Past: History, Memory, and Multiethnic Graphic Novels (Univ. of Georgia Press, 2018) and has published more than thirty-five articles and book chapters on nineteenth- and twentieth-century American literature.
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Martha J. Cutter; Artistic Liberties: American Literary Realism and Graphic Illustration, 1880–1905
Immersive Words: Mass Media, Visuality, and American Literature, 1839–1893. American Literature 1 December 2018; 90 (4): 863–866. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00029831-7208599
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