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Reading Images provides the first systematic and comprehensive account of the grammar of visual design. By looking at the formal elements and structures of design the authors examine the ways in which images communicate meaning.
Focussing on both traditional and modern media (theatre, fiction, poetry, graphic art, cinema), the essays of Reading Images and Seeing Words show how it is according to signifying codes (rhetoric, poetics, metaphor), that meaning and knowledge are produced. Not the least value of this collection is the insight it gives into the multiple models of word / image interaction and the rich ambiguity of the tautological and oxymoronic relations they embody.
Is seeing a matter of nature? Does perspective show things as they really are? Can we read an image in the same way as a text? Reading Images draws together essays that attempt to answer these questions but in a variety of ways and from the different theoretical positions offered by psychoanalysis, semiotics, poststructuralism and postmodernism. The anthology opens up a dialogue between seeing and the seen, text and image, theory and practice. By discussing a range of visual material, from advertising and architecture to painting and photography, it crosses generic and disciplinary boundaries and suggests ways in which vision and visuality are related to questions of textuality, subjectivity, race and gender.
This second edition of the landmark textbook Reading Images builds on its reputation as the first systematic and comprehensive account of the grammar of visual design. Drawing on an enormous range of examples from children's drawings to textbook illustrations, photo-journalism to fine art, as well as three-dimensional forms such as sculpture and toys, the authors examine the ways in which images communicate meaning. Features of this fully updated second edition include: new material on moving images and on colour a discussion of how images and their uses have changed through time websites and web-based images ideas on the future of visual communication. Reading Images focuses on the structures or 'grammar' of visual design – colour, perspective, framing and composition – provides the reader with an invaluable 'tool-kit' for reading images and makes it a must for anyone interested in communication, the media and the arts.
Reading Images focuses on the multi-layered relationships between the textual image and its reader-viewer in the Apocalypse manuscripts produced in England during the thirteenth century, a period of profound changes in the social and cultural fabric. The exponential expansion in the production and dissemination of illuminated manuscripts that occurred at this time provided a critical, cultural mechanism for the creation of new technologies of the self. As the Apocalypse narrative was visualized in pictures, it became a powerful paradigm within which problematic contemporary experiences such as anti-Judaism, the later Crusades, and expectations of the world's end could be defined. Reading Images explores the kinds of contemporary mythologies that constitute ideology, a realm in which visual representation becomes an agent rather than a reflector of social change.
How and what do we see and know when we look at a painting? Conversely, how do we visualize the literary text? These questions are the focus of Claude Gandelman's virtuoso essays on reading and the visual arts. Gandelman's subjects range from the Egyptians to Franz Kafka, from Las Meninas to concrete poetry. His methodology is semiotic. He reads pictures as signs and tries to understand the significance of a wide variety of pictorial and textual signs and gestures. Kafks's caricature of the skeletal "hunger artist," for example, is read against the similarly distorted images of Expressionist painting and film. Another chapter, - on doors as thresholds, as visual rites of passage - studies the "optics of liminality" in art and literature from seventeenth-century realist Flemish painting to Madame Bovary. Two key chapters deal with the body images all of us bear within ourselves, the implicit image of oneself that is inscribed as a sort of imprint in the cortex and that has been visualized as a homunculus. Do we read this image and extract it, sometimes violently, in our images of the Other? -- Book Jacket.

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