Sunday, January 16, 2011

Engaging English Art

Michael Cohen, Engaging English Art: Entering the Work in Two Centuries of English Painting and Poetry (University of Alabama Press, 1987).

Engaging English Art is about strategies common to poetry and painting for engaging readers and observers. Engagement is a word Cohen uses to identify the reader’s or observer’s experience of entering the work of art and being captured intellectually, emotionally, or morally by its subject. His examples come from English painting and poetry from about 1680 to 1880, because Cohen believes that engagement had preferred critical status as an artistic goal in England during this period, until the advent of aestheticism.

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