THE POETICS OF SIGHT

Analyses the eloquence and attack of visual metaphors in the words of Shakespeare, Pope, Proust and Hughes and of concrete – visible – metaphors in the art of Della Francesca, Blake, Delacroix, Magritte.

‘An accomplished and lucid exploration of the multifaceted relationship between visual images and the written word . . . a lively and engaging tour de force . . . enjoyable and edifying.’  Jorge L. Contreras, PRSReview

Visual Studies

THE STORY OF BLACK

The Greek word melancholia (literally ‘black bile’) defines the misery of depression, yet the little black dress is the epitome of chic. How is it that from ancient Egypt to the present the colour black has retained its power to fascinate, empower, divide and appal?

‘A richly informative treat, with curiosities culled from a very wide range of sources, and written with unostentatious elegance . . . This is a book to instruct and delight.’  Literary Review

CLOTHES

What shall I wear, who shall I be? Are our clothes our surface or our self? Is it true clothes change the face of life?

‘With a writer's delight in language and rhythm, Harvey makes the reader aware of all the important issues that clothes provoke – historical, theoretical, social, psychological, material, aesthetic.'  Essays in Criticism

MEN IN BLACK

Men’s clothes went black in the nineteenth century: Dickens, Ruskin and Baudelaire all asked why it was, in this age of supreme wealth and power, that men wanted to dress as if going to a funeral.

‘A walk through history by someone who knows what he’s talking about . . . always interesting and beautifully written.’  The Washington Times

VICTORIAN NOVELISTS AND THEIR ILLUSTRATORS

When novels began to be published in serial monthly parts, the roles of novelist and artist changed dramatically.

‘this scholarly, well-illustrated… important book.’  TLS

© 2019 by John Harvey, jrh49@cam.ac.uk 

Novelist, art critic, literary critic and Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge

  • Facebook
  • Twitter