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Title: Visual art and the book in modern poetry
Author: Rutter, Mark
ISNI:       0000 0001 3542 5293
Awarding Body: University of Southampton
Current Institution: University of Southampton
Date of Award: 2006
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This is a study of the relation between poetry, visual art and the book in modern poetry in Britain. The last century has seen an unprecedented amount of experimentation with combining poetry and art, in the form of illustrated books, artist's books, mixed media works, and visual poems, yet this has remained largely below the radar of critical discussion. This thesis attempts to begin to correct this situation. The main body of my thesis takes the form of three case studies of key figures in the development of modern poetry, and the role played in their work by the illustrated book and the artist's book: David Jones, Ted Hughes, and Tom Raworth. In addition, I also examine mixed and intermedia works by Tom Phillips, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Gael Turnbull, and Maggie O'Sullivan, in order to suggest the range of possibilities which are opened up when poets collaborate with visual artists, or are themselves visual artists and choose to combine the two media. I have not adopted a particular theoretical perspective a priori, but, because the vast territory of verbal-visual works produced during the period has yet to be adequately described, have focussed on the close interpretation of specific books and poems, in order to begin to develop a set of terms and approaches to understanding this kind of work. Verbal-visual works consistently evade or exceed the kinds of theoretical and critical assumptions that have traditionally been brought to bear on them. Furthermore, such works raise fundamental questions not only of interpretation but of the nature of sensory perception itself: what is the relation of the verbal to the visual? Of the word to the image? Can we look and read at the same time? What effect do the visual, physical, tactile qualities of the book have on its meaning?
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available