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Gustave Doré's London/Londres: empire and post-imperial ruin

Skilton, David 2014. Gustave Doré's London/Londres: empire and post-imperial ruin. Word and Image 30 (3) , pp. 225-237. 10.1080/02666286.2014.938528

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Gustave Doré’s wood-engraving, ‘Macaulay’s New Zealander’ in London: A Pilgrimage by Doré and Blanchard Jerrold (1871–72) is reprinted in Londres by Louis Énault (1876), which is a French printing of most of the images from London: A Pilgrimage, accompanied by a new French text, only distantly related to Jerrold’s. Between Doré’s drawing for the engraving in 1869 and its publication in Paris in 1876, not only has the image crossed the Channel into new cultural contexts, but the meanings produced by the image have been changed by the historical circumstances of the Franco-Prussian War and the Commune. Indeed the relevance of this image of metropolitan ruin to post-bellum and post-Commune Paris even produces a French figure who is the equivalent of the New Zealander, the New Caledonian. The cultural pecking-order (as it were) of London and Paris has changed over a few years (albeit temporarily), and the image, which originally is rather whimsically predictive of London’s eventual fall, becomes many times more vivid in damaged and painfully degraded Paris.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: English, Communication and Philosophy
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PR English literature
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISSN: 0266-6286
Last Modified: 25 Feb 2019 13:55

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