Kathryn Morrison’s task has been enormous: covering just about a thousand years of retail architecture, this work comprises a magnificent collection of visual material and concise history drawn from primary and secondary data.
Textiles and dress occupy a central position within the realm of material culture. Apart from fulfilling the basic human need for clothing and protection, textiles play important political, economic, and religious functions.
By all accounts, ‘the Edwardian’ is a difficult historical period to define. Sandwiched between two momentous historical eras, the Edwardian years seem to lack a coherent identity of their own.
Useful Cinema begins on the perfect point, with the observation that films today ‘appear everywhere’, from ‘iPhone to Imax, from blog inserts to Jumbotrons’, so ‘becoming integral to our experience of institutional and everyday life’.
As Jan Rüger suggested in his 2011 review article ‘Revisiting the Anglo-German antagonism’, since 2000 almost every aspect of the history of Anglo-German relations has been reassessed and re-examined as a story not of increasing and inevitable antagonism, but of a much more complex process.
‘The Sitwells belong to the history of publicity rather than of poetry’, famously pronounced F. R. Leavis in New Bearings in English Poetry (1932).
I cannot help a passing allusion to the lack of pictorial records of this war – records made by artists of experience, who actually witness the scenes they portray.
The dissemination of cultural improvement was written into the ethos of the BBC under John Reith, the first director-general from 1927. Until 1945 the BBC broadcast a single national service and therefore constructed programming that attempted to offer a culturally unified ‘voice of the nation’.
Somewhat late in the day, Tate Britain has got around to an exhibition about the British Empire and its legacies.
In the introduction to her long-awaited and extremely interesting study of the popular literature of Victorian interior decoration, Judith Neiswander prepares her readers – and perhaps to a certain extent herself – for their predicted negative reactions to the décor of the late 19th-century middle class home.