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Enduring Presence

William Hogarth’s British and European Afterlives


Edited By Caroline Patey, Cynthia E. Roman and Georges Letissier

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Long after his death in 1764, William Hogarth is still our contemporary. Far from leading a secluded existence in museums and academies, his legacy of vibrant images and provocative ideas remains a powerful source of inventiveness and inspiration for the artists of today, as once for those of yesterday, be it on page, stage, canvas or digital formats.

After approaching the artist by way of his challenging aesthetic philosophy and his resistance to normative categories, this two-book set considers Hogarth’s pioneering sense of performativity, which has long made him the treasured interlocutor of actors and playwrights, from David Garrick to Bertolt Brecht or Nick Dear. His work has permeated film, television, the graphic novel, art and narrative, which all bear witness to his versatile and powerful use of images and its resonance in the modern and contemporary age. Brimming as it is with energy, plenty, affliction, entropy and empathy, Hogarth’s contradictory universe of chaos and beauty is in tune with ours and resonates vividly with contemporary passions and struggles.

The twenty-eight essays in this collection chart the teeming legacies of William Hogarth and explore the ways in which his works and ideas were and are revisited and appropriated in the UK and across Europe. For the eighteenth-century artist lives on as an unforgotten presence, whose invigorating and challenging memory energizes multiple expressive forms, including drama, visual arts, literature, film, graphic novels and TV serials.

Book 1: The Politics of Taste – Emilio Mazza: Ships, hunters and anatomists. Hogarth and Hume – Elio Franzini: Aesthetic variations on the line of beauty – Cynthia E. Roman: James Gillray’s Hogarthian «ridicule». The contest of graphic satire and the Academy – Laura Rossi: From Pavel Fedotov to Viktor Shklovsky. The turbulent fortunes of William Hogarth in Russia and the USSR – Stefania Consonni: A note on Hogarth’s serpentine beauty. Geometry and hermeneutics, intelligence and eroticism – Hogarth’s Stages – Mariagabriella Cambiaghi: Hogarth and Garrick. Or, the British model for the nineteenth- century actor in Italy – Marco Castellari: A threepenny Hogarth. Brecht, Benjamin, and a friendship, with Hogarthian traces between Weimar and exile – Sara Soncini: Hogarth in drag. Acts of transvestism in The Grace of Mary Traverse and Mother Clap’s Molly House – Mariacristina Cavecchi: Hogarth’s progress in Nick Dear’s The Art of Success – In Other Media – Marie Gueden: «The knight of the organic line of beauty» and film. Or, William Hogarth and Sergei M. Eisenstein – Sylvia Greenup: An even lower Before and After. Homage, presentism and strategy in two TV adaptations of A Harlot’s Progress – Riccardo Capoferro: Hogarth and the history of graphic novels – Daniele Croci: Ripping Yarns. William Hogarth in Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s From Hell – C. Maria Laudando: Hogarth between London and Johannesburg. A serpentine progress through the metropolis of past and present.

Book 2: The Hogarth Effect on Prose – Rosamaria Loretelli: The Analysis of Beauty and the new eighteenth- century narrative paradigm – Roberta Ferrari: The drama of real life. Charles Lamb and «tragic» Hogarth – Paolo Bugliani: The comedy of artistic bathos. William Hazlitt’s familiarity with Hogarth –Francesca Orestano: Hogarth, Dickens, and the progress of vision – Proto- Modernist and Modernist Offshoots – Marco Modenesi: «A wholly popular name». William Hogarth in French fin- desiècle literature – Max Saunders: Hogarth, Ford Madox Brown and Ford Madox Ford – Maurizio Ascari: The present is the only time. Mansfield’s «Marriage à la Mode» and the inability to change – Lia Guerra: Joyce’s Giacomo Joyce and Hogarth’s aesthetics – Christine Reynier: Rebecca West’s and David Low’s intermedial dialogue with William Hogarth in The Modern «Rake’s Progress» (1934) – Dialogues with Contemporary Novelists – Roberta Cimarosti: Creole Britain in Hogarth and David Dabydeen’s Hogarthian books – Serena Grazzini: The line of grace in Peter Handke’s Essay on the Successful Day. With an excursus on Hogarth’s reception in Germanspeaking areas – Margaret Rose: William Hogarth and Thomas Coram’s Foundling Hospital. The institution’s afterlife in fiction and onstage – Alessandra Crotti: A Rake’s Progress of Stamford Hill? Howard Jacobson meets William Hogarth – Georges Letissier: William Hogarth’s serpentine line in Alan Hollinghurst’s «variety composed» literary aesthetics – Works cited.