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Published: 15 January 1998

256 Pages | 23 black and white halftones


ISBN: 9780198182573

Bookseller Code (AQ)

The Pre-Raphaelite Body

Fear and Desire in Painting, Poetry, and Criticism

J. B. Bullen

Clarendon Press

  • A fresh and original study, tracing the sources of the shock felt by the first audiences of Pre-Raphaelitism (as the first avant-garde movement in Britain) to the graphic representation of the distorted, maimed, or eroticized human body.
  • An interdisciplinary study, showing how the critical reaction to the representation of the body in painting and poetry from the work of Millais to that of Rossetti, and from Morris to Burne-Jones was conditioned by a number of late nineteenth-century anxieties, such as fear of cholera and hatred of Catholicism, fascination with the fallen woman, horror at the 'shrieking sisterhood' of emancipated women, and even the terror of psycho-sexual diseases.
  • Brings together fresh, original, and unusual material to show how reactions to painting and poetry are conditioned by such diverse fields as pathology, theology, and attitude to sexuality.