Imaging the French Revolution Discussion
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3. Can imagery be addressed in new ways with on-line methods? Can a collective discussion of imagery produce more scholarly knowledge than just an individual analysis? Is it possible to analyze electronic images in a scholarly manner without examining the material object? texture of the paper? printing technique? style? color?
Advantage of examining the material object Jack Censer, 6-1-03, 3:33 PM
the material object Lynn Hunt, 6-23-03, 10:52 PM
RE: Advantage of examining the material object Vivian Cameron, 7-6-03, 6:28 PM
On-line Collaboration Wayne Hanley, 6-6-03,
9:53 AM
On-line Collaboration Barbara Day-Hickman, 7-1-03,
4:22 PM
RE: On-line Collaboration Joan B. Landes,
7-14-03, 3:28 PM
zooming on images Warren Roberts, 7-2-03, 2:08 PM
on-line collaboration Vivian Cameron, 7-6-03,
6:35 PM
on material objects and digital technology Joan B. Landes, 7-12-03, 5:33 PM
Final thoughts Warren Roberts, 7-19-03, 8:03 AM
on-line collaboration Barbara Day-Hickman,
7-24-03, 4:28 PM

Subject: RE: Advantage of examining the material object
Posted By: Vivian Cameron
Date Posted: 7-6-03, 6:28 PM

Looking at the actual print is obviously better than looking at a reproduction of it, whether the reproduction is a photograph or an on-line image. It isn’t just a question of connoisseurship, that is, identifying the kind of paper, printing technique and the like, but also getting additional information such as the size (very important, colors used, and the like. In the case of “Supplice du Sieur Foulon,” we would discover that it is 0.144m x 0.087, as compared to the Prieur/Berthault print of the same subject, which is 0.155 x 0.205. In other words, the anonymous work is a fairly modest-sized print while the Prieur/Berthault is large. Furthermore, we would note that the anonymous print has in the left corner a “No. 2” and in the right “Page 20.” In other words, it was one of several illustrations to a pamphlet?, a book?, or what??? In trying to find other illustrations from this work (both through style and the numbering system), perhaps we could uncover the political stance of this anonymous engraver.

In another case the “Prise de la Bastille,” this reproduction is possibly a colored drawing for the Thévenin print, which is black and white and reversed. Or perhaps it is a contrefaçon of which there were many in the Revolutionary period (see La Révolution par la Gravure. Les Tableaux historiques de la Révolution française). But it is hard to tell exactly what it is without an examination at the Carnavalet.

Extended Discussion
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