Problem Pictures: Women and Men in Victorian Painting, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Problem Pictures

Women and Men in Victorian Painting, 1st Edition

By Pamela Gerrish Nunn


216 pages

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Paperback: 9781138269019
pub: 2016-11-25
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During the Victorian period there developed a new anxiety about male-female relations and roles in modern society, as described by a member of the Athenaeum in 1858, ’the distinction of man and woman, their separate as well as their joint rights, begins to occupy the attention of our whole community, and with no small effect’. These essays examine Victorian painting in the light of this 'woman question' by analysing the change in representation of the family, romance, social issues such as emigration and colonialism, the use of the female nude and the traditions of portraiture, history-painting and still life. The art and artists are considered in a socio-political context, and the connections between Victorian sexism, racism and classism are examined. These essays bring to light much previously unknown work (especially by women) and reappraise many well-known paintings.


’Pamela Gerrish Nunn is to be praised for her examination of various types of problem pictures� for Victorian women artists and general viewers’ Women Artist News Book Review ’Problem Pictures is wide-ranging in its scope, opening up a number of new areas while pursuing a consistent theme. Many ’lost’ paintings are brought into the scholarly arena…a pioneering study’ Apollo

Table of Contents

Contents: List of illustrations; Acknowledgements; Introduction; Gentlemen, geniuses and interlopers; ’Delightful but limited’; Trouble in paradise; Broken blossoms; The Domestication of history; ’Look homeward, angel!’; In Venus’ train; Bibliography; Index.

About the Series

The Nineteenth Century Series

The Nineteenth Century Series

The Nineteenth Century Series aims to develop and promote new approaches and fresh directions in scholarship and criticism on nineteenth-century literature and culture. The series encourages work which erodes the traditional boundary between Romantic and Victorian studies and welcomes interdisciplinary approaches to the literary, religious, scientific and visual cultures of the period. While British literature and culture are the core subject matter of monographs and collections in the series,  the editors encourage proposals which explore the wider, international contexts of nineteenth-century literature – transatlantic, European and global.  Print culture, including studies in the newspaper and periodical press, book history, life writing and gender studies are particular strengths of this established series as are high quality single author studies.  The series also embraces research in the field of digital humanities. The editors invite proposals from both younger and established scholars in all areas of nineteenth-century literary studies. 

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
ART / History / Romanticism
ART / Techniques / Painting