Anna Notaro, Sara Read, Claire Warden, Sharon Wheeler and Susan Wilson...

A weekly look over the shoulders of our scholar-reviewers

June 27, 2013

Anna Notaro, lecturer in media theory, University of Dundee, is reading Matteo Pericoli’s Manhattan Unfurled (Random House, 2001) and London Unfurled (Macmillan, 2011). “Two beautiful books in accordion format by Pericoli, an architect-illustrator, each containing a collection of pen-and-ink drawings of the urban skyline. The city is unfurled, made known, unfolded like a story: it becomes a form of visual storytelling. Pericoli’s line is a simple but effective way to capture the true ‘image’ of these cities.”

Soul Made Flesh by Carl Zimmer

Sara Read, Renaissance Society postdoctoral fellow, department of English and drama, Loughborough University, is reading Carl Zimmer’s Soul Made Flesh: The Discovery of the Brain – and How it Changed the World (Arrow, 2004). “Predominantly set in the 17th century against a background of civil war and religious upheaval, Soul Made Flesh focuses on ‘farmer turned soldier turned alchemist turned local doctor’ (or ‘pisse-prophet’) Thomas Willis and his game-changing discoveries about the brain. A wealth of characters and information bring war-ravaged Oxford evocatively to life with images such as that of an elderly, disaffected William Harvey shuffling round the streets.”

Bruce by Peter Ames Carlin

Claire Warden, senior lecturer in drama, University of Lincoln, is reading Peter Ames Carlin’s Bruce (Simon & Schuster, 2012). “Carlin’s fascinating narrative of Bruce Springsteen’s life is as much a history of 20th-century America as an exposé of one of rock’s most talented and perennially youthful icons. Providing a real insight into Springsteen’s most beautiful lyrics and melodies, it is a candid reflection on the life of a performer who continues to delight in entertaining his audience.”

Journalism by Joe Sacco

Sharon Wheeler, senior lecturer in journalism, University of Portsmouth, is reading Joe Sacco’s Journalism (Jonathan Cape, 2012). “Sacco is a foreign correspondent with a difference – his stories appear in comic-book format. The Malta-born, US-based journalist has reported from Bosnia and Palestine, an unassuming presence lurking in the background in opaque glasses. This book pulls together shorter pieces from magazines, newspapers and book anthologies, adding stark dispatches from The Hague, India and Iraq to his powerful portfolio.”

Funerary Monuments and Memorials in St Patrick's Cathedral, Armagh by James Stevens Curl

Susan Wilson, independent research historian of landscape architecture, based in County Down, is reading James Steve Curl’s Funerary Monuments & Memorials in St Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh (Historical Publications, 2013). “As a recent explorer of much uncharted territory within devotional spaces and green commemorative landscapes, I am entranced by this beautiful record of quality artworks. Blessed with a receptive eye, the author, in this honourable tribute to his long-dead father, has given us a scholarly feast in which refined text and splendid illustration celebrate largely unsung art on free display.”

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