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characteristics using concepts taken from the developing fields of French structuralism and post-structuralism. Many of them were prolific writers, and the artists’ texts and material practices coalesced around the deconstruction of binaries within the language of painting – the foremost of which was indicated in the group’s name. The shift to a Marxist, and then later Maoist, rhetoric was not far, especially in the highly politicised context of French intellectual circles at the end 8 150 Art, Global Maoism and the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s. Dialectical materialism

in Art, Global Maoism and the Chinese Cultural Revolution
From Burke’s Philosophical Enquiry to British Romantic art

The challenge of the sublime argues that the unprecedented visual inventiveness of the Romantic period in Britain could be seen as a response to theories of the sublime, more specifically to Edmund Burke’s Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful (1757). While it is widely accepted that the Enquiry contributed to shaping the thematics of terror that became fashionable in British art from the 1770s, this book contends that its influence was of even greater consequence, paradoxically because of Burke’s conviction that the visual arts were incapable of conveying the sublime. His argument that the sublime was beyond the reach of painting, because of the mimetic nature of visual representation, directly or indirectly incited visual artists to explore not just new themes, but also new compositional strategies and even new or undeveloped pictorial and graphic media, such as the panorama, book illustrations and capricci. More significantly, it began to call into question mimetic representational models, causing artists to reflect about the presentation of the unpresentable and the inadequacy of their endeavours, and thus drawing attention to the process of artistic production itself, rather than the finished artwork. By revisiting the links between eighteenth-century aesthetic theory and visual practices, The challenge of the sublime establishes new interdisciplinary connections which address researchers in the fields of art history, cultural studies and aesthetics.

(eco)feminist interpellations of Chineseness in the work of Yuk King Tan, Cao Fei, and Wu Mali

environmental and labor issues in the last decade or so have contributed to a dialectical materialism for the current conditions of global capitalism. The cycle of economic boom characterized by the ‘made in China’ trope in the twenty-first century, emerging successively after the ‘made in Taiwan’ label of the twentieth-century, has accelerated the conditions of environmental crisis. Situated in the circuit of multi-national trade, moving rapidly since the 1990s, Tan, Cao, and Wu’s subjects expose the ways in which environmental concerns are explicitly connected to the

in Staging art and Chineseness

urban society, the USSR in the 1950s and 1960s was comparable to European countries whose material environment had been severely damaged by the Second World War.5 As Kozlov and Gilburd note, ‘Unprecedented in the household context, Khrushchev’s mass housing campaign belonged with contemporary trends in urban planning, construction technology, welfare and aesthetic vision’. They label the government’s effort to reinforce its legitimacy by increasing people’s material prosperity and paying greater attention to consumer goods as the ‘Soviet regime’s new materialism’.6

in Comradely objects
Word and image in Chicago Surrealism

-image relations in comics, described by Rosemont as ‘a new kind of ‘“hieroglyphic” poetry’ or ‘hysterical hieroglyphic’.10 These hieroglyphs often reflexively interrogate pictorial, as well as verbal, representation and some might be more familiarly described, following W. J. T. Mitchell, as metapictures.11 And yet the Chicago group were not only, or exclusively, iconologists. As Surrealists, their hermeneutic for interpreting poetic or hysterical hieroglyphs drew on psychoanalysis and historical materialism in order to position comics, and demarcate their role, within an as

in Mixed messages
The conceptual horizons of the avant-garde in Armenia

one of the most consistent debates on the concept of the ideal from a perspective of historical materialism while synthesizing Hegel and Marx. Most twentieth-century Western philosophy and theory, by contrast (with the exception of Lacan) has either defined the ideal as a product of the individual mind and of a concern for formal logic or, as with traditional psychoanalysis, as the supra-cultural domain of the superego. The historical materialist approach that Lifshitz and Ilyenkov developed, albeit differently, helps to conceptualize the ideal as an outcome of

in The political aesthetics of the Armenian avant-garde
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To fasten words again to visible – and invisible – things

appear outside the boundaries of linguistic mediation’, because in that event ‘no term can escape the gravitational pull of its semantic context’.33 Price’s essay in this collection explores this position in relation to the conceptual artworks of Lawrence Weiner, whose apparently linguacentric aestheticism she reveals as a deep-rooted materialism, the meaning of which is located in language’s structural relations. As such, Price argues, Weiner’s works ‘defy media specificity, temporal fixity and spatial stability’ in order to 9 10 Mixed messages ‘continually

in Mixed messages
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Horstmanshoff, Helen King and Claus Zittel (eds), Blood, Sweat and Tears: Changing Concepts of Physiology from Antiquity into Early Modern Europe (Leiden: Brill, 2012), pp. 267–91. 45 See for a general account Angelica Goodden, Diderot and the Body (Oxford: 99 100 Fleshing out surfaces Legenda, 2001), here in particular p. 1. On the emergence of the sciences humaines, Michel Foucault, The Order of Things: An Archaeology of the Human Sciences [1966], trans. A. M. Sheridan Smith (London: Tavistock, 1970). 46 Ann Thomson, ‘Mechanistic materialism vs vitalistic materialism

in Fleshing out surfaces
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Jonathon Shears

first time too, domestic comfort was, as Flanders has explained, a prominent concern of the middle classes and objects generated a discourse of longing and desire (2006: p. 15). The nature of display, with its apparent endorsement of the wonders of technological progress and materialism was not, however, without its critics.  William Morris called the Crystal Palace ‘wonderfully ugly’ and refused  to enter. Along with Ralph Nicholson Wornum, who attacked mass production in his essay ‘The Exhibition as a Lesson in Taste’ (1851), he protested against mechanisation and

in The Great Exhibition, 1851

future of humanity, is to look at the relationship between byt and bytie. This is a relationship between the time of earthly history – the here and now – and the transcendental state that history will reach at its end. In Kamensky’s autobiography, this relationship is articulated as the camaraderie between the glutton and the angel. The angelic Kamensky, the creature of bytie, in the prose of 1918 does not lead a life above and beyond earthly existence. In the spirit of dialectical materialism,16 so to speak, angelic spiritual existence depends on material life, on byt

in Modernism and the making of the Soviet New Man