Modernist Women and Visual Cultures

Modernist Women and Visual Cultures : Virginia Woolf, Vanessa Bell, Photography and Cinema

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Description

An exploration of modernist women's distinctive role in domestic and cinema arts in the context of current debates about gender and modernism. Photographs, particularly domestic photos of family and friends, taken by Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell form the centrepiece of this delightful book. Many rare and intimate images discovered among the archive collections of their photographs are published here for the first time and are analysed in relation to contemporary photographic and cinematic practice. Discussion of the cinema writings of Colette, H.D., Dorothy Richardson, Gertrude Stein, Virginia Woolf and Bryher and the role of the visual in Virginia Woolf's Three Guineas also feature in Maggie Humm's consideration of women and visual culture. This new approach to modernist visual aesthetics draws on a range of photographic, psychoanalytic and visual theory, on modernist criticism and on extensive, original archive research. The concern in the book with women's ways of looking as well as an assessment of how gendered subjectivities are visually constructed will be crucial to rethinking modernist aesthetics.Illustrated with 45 black and white plates, including several complete pages from photo albums, from sources including Virginia Woolf's 'Monk's House Albums', the 'Leslie Stephen Photograph Album' and Vanessa Bell's 'Albums'.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 189 x 246mm
  • EDINBURGH UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • 45 black & white plates
  • 074860894X
  • 9780748608942

Review quote

Humm's book is most valuable in its detailed discussions of Vanessa and Virginia Stephen's early and long-lasting fascination with photography. Here her argument that photographs are carriers of gendered memories is original and persuasive. Humm's book offers an engrossing and pleasurable overview of modernist women's engagement with the new technologies of photography and cinema. It is full of myriad fascinating details and is visually appealing. It has thick glossy pages and features many black and white photographs. Imaginative and original interpretations supported by careful and insightful readings of both images and texts make this book an indispensable resouce for students not only of Woolf, but also of Modernism, visual culture, gender, and the complex relations among them. A beautifully presented text [which] will have a great impact not only on the position of Woolf and other modernist women and their role in and for the modernist tradtion, but also on the ways we can read the interrelations between the textual and visual. Humm's book is most valuable in its detailed discussions of Vanessa and Virginia Stephen's early and long-lasting fascination with photography. Here her argument that photographs are carriers of gendered memories is original and persuasive. Humm's book offers an engrossing and pleasurable overview of modernist women's engagement with the new technologies of photography and cinema. It is full of myriad fascinating details and is visually appealing. It has thick glossy pages and features many black and white photographs. Imaginative and original interpretations supported by careful and insightful readings of both images and texts make this book an indispensable resouce for students not only of Woolf, but also of Modernism, visual culture, gender, and the complex relations among them. A beautifully presented text [which] will have a great impact not only on the position of Woolf and other modernist women and their role in and for the modernist tradtion, but also on the ways we can read the interrelations between the textual and visual.show more

About Maggie Humm

Maggie Humm is a Professor of Cultural Studies in the School of Humanities and Social Science at the University of East London. She is the author of many books including Snapshots of Bloomsbury: The Private Lives of Virginia Woolf and Vanessa Bell (Tate Publishing & Rutgers University Press, 2006) and Modernist Women and Visual Cultures: Virginia Woolf, Vanessa Bell, Photography and Cinema (Edinburgh University Press & Rutgers University Press 2002).show more

Table of contents

1.Modernism,gender,photography and Woolf's 'Portraits'; 2. Matrixial Memories: Virginia Woolf's Photo Albums; 3. Modernism, the Maternal and the Erotic: Vanessa Bell's Photo Albums; 4. Modernism, cinema, gender and Borderline; 5. Modernist women and cinema; 6. Memory, photography and modernism: Woolf's Three Guineas; 7. Afterword and Woolf's essays on modernism; Bibliography; Index.show more