Biography vs. Literature, Art, and Criticism

Karen Junod

in ‘Writing the Lives of Painters’

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199597000
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725357 | DOI:

Series: Oxford English Monographs

Biography vs. Literature, Art, and Criticism

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Chapter 1 presents an overview of biographical writing in eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Britain, and shows that while the biographies of painters shared many affinities with other contemporary textual lives, such biographies also developed into a specific and separate literary genre. This section also notes the importance of Vasari's Vite and the ways in which this text influenced, and was simultaneously resisted by, British writers. Finally, this chapter discusses the development of connoisseurship in eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Britain and tackles the question of how far the biographical mode of art-writing responded to, and defined itself against, the connoisseurial and more formal discourse which continued to enjoy high cultural and intellectual status during the period.

Keywords: biography; art-writing; Romanticism; connoisseurship; Vasari; Vite

Chapter.  14981 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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