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Julia Margaret Cameron's 'Fancy Subjects': Photographic Allegories of Victorian Identity and Empire

Condition: BRAND NEW
ISBN: 9781784993177
Author(s): Jeff Rosen
Format: Hardcover
Year: 2016
Publisher: Manchester University Press
Dimensions: 165 x 241 x 25 (w x l x h)
Pages: 336

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Description:
Julia Margaret Cameron's 'fancy subjects' is the first study of Cameron's allegorical photographs and the first to examine the intellectual connections of this imagery to British culture and politics of the 1860s and 1870s. In these photographs, Cameron depicted passages from classical mythology, the Old and New Testament, and historical and contemporary literature. She costumed her friends, domestic help, and village children in dramatic poses, turning them into goddesses and nymphs, biblical kings and medieval knights; she photographed young women in the style of the Elgin marbles, making sculpture come alive, and re-imagined scenes depicted in the poetry of Byron and Tennyson. Cameron chose allegory as her primary artistic device because it allowed her to use popular iconography to convey a latent or secondary meaning. In her photographs, a primary meaning is first conveyed by the title of the image; then, social and political ideas that the artist implanted in the image begin to emerge, contributing to and commenting on the contemporary cultural, religious and political debates of the time.
Cameron used the term 'fancy subjects' to embed these moral, intellectual and political narratives in her photographs. This book reconnects her to the prominent minds in her circle who influenced her thinking, including Benjamin Jowett, George Grote and Henry Taylor, and d
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