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Maurer, Kathrin: "Visualizing the Past. The Power of the Image in Franz Kugler and Adolph Menzel’s Illustrated History Book Geschichte Friedrichs des Großen (1842)." In: Germanic Review 87.2 (2012), S. 103–122.
|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Maurer2012a
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Keywords: Deutschland, Historische Themen, Illustration, Randformen des Comics
Collection: Germanic Review
Current scholars often neglect the formative role of popular visual media for the formation of nineteenth-century German academic historicism and exclusively focus on its textual and narrative design. This article aims to change this perspective by exploring the representational power of images in the genre of illustrated history books, specifically in the work on Prussian history by the art historian Franz Kugler and the painter Adolph Menzel, Geschichte Friedrichs des Großen (1842). Menzel’s use of wood engraving created a revolutionary text and image relationship, because his illustrations could be printed directly into the text. Menzel and Kugler’s medial hybrids reconfigure historical representation by referencing visual perception modes exhibited in panoramas, photography, and landscape paintings. Their work represents the era of Frederick II beyond a narrative paradigm and highlights visual-spatial conceptions of the past that are not commonly associated with German academic historicism.
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