Craft, Community and the Material Culture of Place and Politics, 19th-20th Century: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Craft, Community and the Material Culture of Place and Politics, 19th-20th Century

1st Edition

Edited by Janice Helland, Beverly Lemire, Alena Buis


246 pages

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9781138547629
pub: 2018-02-06
Hardback: 9781409462071
pub: 2014-01-28

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Craft practice has a rich history and remains vibrant, sustaining communities while negotiating cultures within local or international contexts. More than two centuries of industrialization have not extinguished handmade goods; rather, the broader force of industrialization has redefined and continues to define the context of creation, deployment and use of craft objects. With object study at the core, this book brings together a collection of essays that address the past and present of craft production, its use and meaning within a range of community settings from the Huron Wendat of colonial Quebec to the Girls’ Friendly Society of twentieth-century England. The making of handcrafted objects has and continues to flourish despite the powerful juggernaut of global industrialization, whether inspired by a calculated refutation of industrial sameness, an essential means to sustain a cultural community under threat, or a rejection of the imposed definitions by a dominant culture. The broader effects of urbanizing, imperial and globalizing projects shape the multiple contexts of interaction and resistance that can define craft ventures through place and time. By attending to the political histories of craft objects and their makers, over the last few centuries, these essays reveal the creative persistence of various hand mediums and the material debates they represented.


'Together, [the essays] bring fresh perspectives to the study of non-industrial craft in a fascinating variety of contexts during the 19th and 20th centuries, from the shores of Lake Ontario to the North Island of New Zealand; from colonial India to Colonial Revival collections in New Castle, Delaware; and rural County Donegal, Ireland to the West End of London. Collectively, the essays demonstrate that, across the globe, craft was deeply invested in modernity and vice versa.' Reviews in History

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Janice Helland, Beverly Lemire and Alena Buis; Village craft, rural industry: the politics of modern globalized craft, Edward S. Cooke, Jr; Souvenir art, collectable craft, cultural heritage: the Wendat (Huron) of Wendake, Quebec, Anne de Stecher; ‘To foster and encourage the study and practice of Maori arts and crafts’: indigenous material culture, colonial arts and crafts and New Zealand museums, Conal McCarthy; Re-constructing the old Dutch house: New Castle's colonial Dutch gem and Louise Crowninshield's preservation community, Alena Buis; From the gift shop to the permanent collection: women and the circulation of Inuit art, Anne Whitelaw; Benevolence, revival and 'fair trade': an historical perspective, Janice Helland; Negotiating the colonial encounter: making objects for export in the Andaman Islands, 1858-1920, Claire Wintle; Crafting inclusion for ‘invalid’ women: the Girls’ Friendly Society central needlework depot 1899-1947, Vivienne Richmond; Crafting suburbia: the community as craft object, Lily Crowther; The Guild of All Arts in Scarborough, Ontario: craft, community and memories, Alla Myzelev; Index.

About the Editors

Janice Helland is Professor of Art History and Head of Department (Art History & Art Conservation) at Queen's University, Kingston, Canada. Beverly Lemire is Professor & Henry Marshall Tory Chair, Department of History & Classics, University of Alberta, Canada. Alena Buis is Doctor of Philosophy Candidate in Art History, Queen's University, Canada.

About the Series

The Histories of Material Culture and Collecting, 1700-1950

The Histories of Material Culture and Collecting provides a forum for the broad study of object acquisition and collecting practices in their global dimensions from 1700 to 1950. The series seeks to illuminate the intersections between material culture studies, art history, and the history of collecting. It takes as its starting point the idea that objects both contributed to the formation of knowledge in the past and likewise contribute to our understanding of the past today. The human relationship to objects has proven a rich field of scholarly inquiry, with much recent scholarship either anthropological or sociological rather than art historical in perspective. Underpinning this series is the idea that the physical nature of objects contributes substantially to their social meanings, and therefore that the visual, tactile, and sensual dimensions of objects are critical to their interpretation. This series therefore seeks to bridge anthropology and art history, sociology and aesthetics. It encompasses the following areas of concern: 1. Material culture in its broadest dimension, including the high arts of painting and sculpture, the decorative arts (furniture, ceramics, metalwork, etc.), and everyday objects of all kinds. 2. Collecting practices, be they institutionalized activities associated with museums, governmental authorities, and religious entities, or collecting done by individuals and social groups. 3. The role of objects in defining self, community, and difference in an increasingly international and globalized world, with cross-cultural exchange and travel the central modes of object transfer. 4. Objects as constitutive of historical narratives, be they devised by historical figures seeking to understand their past or in the form of modern scholarly narratives. The series publishes interdisciplinary and comparative research on objects that addresses one or more of these perspectives and includes monographs, thematic studies, and edited volumes of essays.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
ART / History / General
ART / History / Modern (late 19th Century to 1945)
ART / History / Romanticism