Aesop, intermediality and graphic satire, c. 1740
in Changing satire
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Discussion in this chapter centres on a print that was published in London towards the end of Sir Robert Walpole’s premiership (1722–42). The politically motivated image has been attributed to a Frenchman who draws on Aesop to enhance the satirical characterisation of contemporary political figures. If the Aesopian format allows the satirist to cast local political tensions within an international frame of reference, it also shows how a discursive mode of satirical representation has become a visual one. Visualising rather than textualising a seventeenth-century satirical tradition is indicative in this chapter of the ‘changing’ status of political satire, although if political fables could make sense as political images by c. 1740, this depended on the intermedial referencing that the European print market made possible.

Changing satire

Transformations and continuities in Europe, 1600–1830

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