[Milton-L] Eighteenth-Century Fiction - Material Fictions, Part 1

UTP Journals thawkic551 at rogers.com
Thu Oct 25 13:23:02 EDT 2018


New issue is now available! 

 

Eighteenth-Century Fiction 

Material Fictions, Part 1

Volume 31 No. 1, Fall 2018

ECF Online: http://bit.ly/ecf311a 

 


Material Fictions: A Dialogue as Introduction


Eugenia Zuroski , Michael Yonan
The co-editors of “Material Fictions” introduce the ECF special issue
through a conversation about the interdisciplinary objectives that in spired
the collection and the insights about materiality, interpretation, and the
critical study of texts and objects that emerged from the collection.
Addressing points of overlap as well as tension among the fields of art
history, literary studies, and material culture studies, we consider how
collaborative attention to materiality complicates hermeneutic models like
“surface reading” or “form vs. context” and urges art and literary critical
practice towards embodied forms of knowledge. We also discuss the
etymological kinship of fictions and manufactured objects; the role of
Aristotelian philosophy, thing theory, and other lines of thought across
fields; and the role of pleasure in our disciplinary and interdisciplinary
practices.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311b 

 

ARTICLES

 


“Character Resolved into Clay”: The Toby Jug, Eighteenth-Century English
Ceramics, and the Rise of Consumer Culture


Elizabeth Kowaleski Wallace
Why was the Toby jug so popular? And why is this novelty item still so
popular? How was this porcelain drinking vessel made, and how was this
making a significant accomplishment for English potteries? The Toby jug can
reveal much about how people are figured as individuals and as consumers.
First, this essay sum marizes the rise of the English ceramic tradi tion,
reviewing the technologies that made possible the manufacture of items like
the Toby jug. Second, the essay ex plores the Toby jug as a metaphor for
human sub jec tivity, with emphasis on a British national subject. The essay
argues that the Toby jug is an especially power ful emblem for a consumer
culture marked by deep paradoxes. Next, the jug is considered in comparison
to the rise of idio syncratic characters like Laurence Sterne’s Uncle Toby,
from whom it might seem to take its name. The essay concludes with a
reflection on Martin Heidegger’s essay on the jug. This essay models the
application of new mater ialist methodologies in an attempt to extend the
concerns of material culture practice.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311c 


Animal Things, Human Language, and Children’s Education


Emily M. West
In this article, I analyze the animal materials incorporated into
eighteenth-century educational products that were intended to teach children
to read. I begin with an ivory alphabet toy and then extend my analysis to
children’s books by Sarah Trimmer, John Aikin, and Anna Letitia Barbauld.
Working at the intersection of material culture studies and animal studies
enables new readings of this collection of familiar didactic texts by
connecting the animals represented in them to the animal products used to
make children’s textual toys. In both toys and books, linguistic systems are
made from animal parts so that human subjects can be distinguished from
animal objects. While animal life and meaning are emptied out in this
process of objectification, the animal thing persistently asserts itself,
revealing the beauty of rational order to be the disordered remains of
another, animal form. By attending to these animal things, we can recognize
and reread eighteenth-century texts as animal relics.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311d 


Craft(ing) Narratives: Specimens, Souvenirs, and “Morsels” in A la Ronde’s
Specimen Table


Freya Gowrley
This article explores the relationship between souvenir acquisition and the
construction of narrative in the interior decoration of A la Ronde in Devon,
home to cousins Jane and Mary Parminter. During their 1796–1811 period of
homosocial cohabitation, the Parminters ornamented the property with
handcrafted objects and spaces, often fabricated from sou venirs, found
objects, and pieces from their family collection. While the secondary
literature on A la Ronde emphasizes the appropriateness of so-called
feminine crafts such as shell-work and paperwork for the decoration of a
female space, this article reveals how the cousins used material objects to
create complex domestic, familial, and touristic narratives. Focusing on a
specimen table made around 1790, the article situates its production in rela
tion to the histories of the Parminter family, their residence in Devon, and
their extensive Continental tour. Utilizing frameworks from period travel
writing, it demonstrates how the collection and creation of such objects was
indivisible from the construction of narrative.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311e 


Caught by the Throat: Anti-slavery Assemblages in Paul et Virginieand
Belinda


Conny Cassity
Extending the observations of literary critics who draw connections between
Bernardin de Saint-Pierre’s Paul et Virginie (1788) and Maria Edge-worth’s
Belinda (1801), this essay examines how Bernardin’s novel informs
Edgeworth’s racial politics in Belinda via cultural artifacts. Edgeworth
re-imagines the iron collar featured in Paul et Virginie as an Angola pea
necklace in her novel, communicating through the necklace a message of
cross-cultural tolerance. Along with the merchant ship Saint Géran in Paul
et Virginie and the necklace’s remains in Edgeworth’s 1810 revision of
Belinda, the jewellery and slave collar partake in an assemblage that
infuses these authors’ novels with Black history. Focusing on these
artifacts’ material legacies as presented in their respective novels, I
argue that Paul et Virginie evokes connections to Mauritian Maroons’
traumatic past and that Belindaadvocates for domestic tolerance of
interracial marriage. These objects resonate through out these texts,
offering a more nuanced and material understanding of Black culture than
most critics have heretofore allowed these works.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311f 


The Fictility of Porcelain: Making and Shaping Meaning in Lady Dorothea
Banks’s “Dairy Book”


Emma Newport
While there are extensive records of Sir Joseph Banks’s lifetime of work,
the “Dairy Book” is one of the few surviving documents that chart an aspect
of the intellectual life of his wife, Lady Dorothea Banks. The Dairy Book
represents a record of Dorothea’s interpretation of her porcelain
collection, acquired through the Banks family’s international network of
scholars, scientists, and manufacturers. Beginning with a discussion of its
unusual materiality, this article argues that the Dairy Book is distanced
from the ordinary book form and is instead closer to the porcelain
collection in substance: occulted, disorderly, and excessive. The Dairy Book
functions as a metonym for the porcelain collection and the substance
itself. This article examines porcelain and the collector’s text as fictile
material: a portable signifier and a repository for meanings that are shaped
by the collector’s selection and display. The plasticity suggested by
“fictile” destabilizes understandings of how meaning is created and
communicated. It frames how porcelain may be interpreted through associated
practices of synecdoche, metonymy, and transposition.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311g 


Colonizing through Clay: A Case Study of the Pineapple in British Material
Culture


Joanna M. Gohmann
Appealing to notions of exoticism, the pineapple fruit secured a stronghold
on the eighteenth-century British imagination. I analyze the ways in which
British subjects understood the pineapple, as both a natural product and a
decorative motif. I focus on a particularly popular example of pineapple
cream-ware, a Staffordshire coffee-pot, as a way to explore the multifaceted
implications of the fruit and its role in empire, and to identify the
paradoxical symbolism of the pineapple. Today, many individuals understand
the fruit as a symbol of polite hospitality; I complicate this notion,
turning to horti culture dictionaries and natural histories in order to
reconstruct the eighteenth-century British fascination with this Caribbean
fruit, arguing that the pineapple—as a fruit and a decorative object—also
embodied notions of empire and difference.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311h 


Of Mind and Matter in Charles Duclos’s Acajou et Zirphile


Tili Boon Cuillé
Charles Duclos based Acajou et Zirphile (1744) on ten drawings by François
Boucher, originally designed to illustrate the Comte de Tessin’s Faunillane,
ou l’Infante jaune (1741). Separated from their source and rearranged, these
illustrations, which depict a woman’s head severed from her body then reas
sembled, tell quite a different story. I consider the materiality of the
illustra tions, placing them in the context of the various media in which
Boucher worked and which his drawings and engravings inspired, includ ing
painting, costume and set design, porcelain, and tapestry. I also explore
the materi ality in the illustrations, demonstrating how Duclos, like
Boucher, places char acters and objects on the same ontological level in
both his tale and his moral treatise, Considérations sur les mœurs de ce
siècle (1751), which share the same pedagogical preoccupations. Boucher’s
illustrations mediate rela tion ships between the two tales, Duclos’s tale
and his moral treatise, and Duclos’s tale and Charles-Simon Favart’s
opéra-comique Acajou, affirming the status of book illustration as an
intermedial cultural object.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311i 


Puppets, Waxworks, and a Wooden Dramatis Personae: Eighteenth-Century
Material Culture and Philosophical History in William Godwin’s Fleetwood


Emma Peacocke
William Godwin’s novel Fleetwood, or The New Man of Feeling (1805) is a phil
osophical history, crafted through distinctively eighteenth-century material
objects. Two extraordinary episodes underpin this history of one
individual’s mind and of the times that shaped it, and demonstrate how
material objects con tribute to the personal and political nature of
narratives of the self. First, a human-sized puppet is used in a fatal prank
among Oxford undergradu ates; second, Fleetwood deliriously destroys a
waxwork image of his wife. Where Godwin’s contemporaries found these scenes
too outré for a novel that claimed veri similitude, I argue that their
materi alism is crucial to Fleetwood’s examina tion of eighteenth-century
insti tu tions. Because examin ing material culture was a typical
eighteenth-century historiographical strategy, Godwin is able to write as
though in the era that he describes and with the wisdom of hindsight from
1805. Fore ground ing the material objects of puppet and wax work
illuminates the satirical, educational, medical, sexual, and theatrical dis
courses that imbue Fleetwood’s material artifacts and that shape the novel’s
setting.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/2OBveje 


Afterword: What Do We Mean by “Material”?


Sean Silver
What do the authors of this collection mean when they use the word
“material”? In this afterword, I disentangle two distinct meanings which
have found their way into the ECFspecial issue “Material Fictions,” and
which speak to two traditions of material thinking in academic discourse.
The first, associ ated with “material” as an adjective, I call physicalist,
tracing debts to philo sophical materialisms, including Marxist historical
materialism. The second, associated with “materials” in the plural, I call
alchemical, which names an ongoing interest in the properties of physical
media. Both of these tradi tions are with us still, but scholars of the
eighteenth century are suited to weigh in because the first century of the
modern era was importantly invested in each. I conclude with a few thoughts
on how these traditions might be knitted together, citing attempts in this
collection towards exactly this aim.
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311k 

Reviews

 


Performance review: The Way of the World by William Congreve; and The
Fantastic Follies of Mrs Rich by Mary Pix


Julia H. Fawcett  
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311l 

 

Restoration Printed Fiction: A Comprehensive and Searchable Database of
Fiction Printed 1660–1700 (website)
Leah Orr
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311m 

 

The Making of Jane Austen by Devoney Looser
Katie Halsey
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311n 




Le Conte à visée morale et philosophique, de Fénelon à Voltaire par Magali
Fourgnaud
Ute Heidmann, Jean-Michel Adam
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311o 

 

Effeminate Years: Literature, Politics, and Aesthetics in
Mid-Eighteenth-Century Britain by Declan Kavanagh
Jason D. Solinger
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311p 

 

A Cultural History of the Senses in the Age of Enlightenment, ed. Anne C.
Vila
Mary Peace
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311q 

 

Republic of Taste: Arts, Politics, and Everyday Life in Early America by
Catherine E. Kelly
David Vinson
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311r 

 

The Secret History in Literature, 1660–1820, ed. Rebecca Bullard and Rachel
Carnell
Michael J. Drexler
Read at ECF Online>>> http://bit.ly/ECF311s 

 

For more information about Eighteenth Century Fiction or for submissions
information, please contact:

 

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Tel: (416) 667-7810 Fax: (416) 667-7881

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