Igoe, Laura Turner, 1982-, The opulent city and the Sylvan State , 2014
- The opulent city and the Sylvan State : art and environmental embodiment in early national Philadelphia / by Laura Turner Igoe.
- Ann Arbor, MI : ProQuest, 2014.
- Physical Description:
- xxiii, 355 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 22 cm
- Reference LibraryHT243.U62 I36 2014 (LC)Accessible in the Reference Library [Hours]
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- August 2014.
"A dissertation submitted to the Temple University Graduate Board"--Cover.
Ph.D. University 20xx
This dissertation investigates the ways in which Philadelphia artists and architects visualized, comprehended, and reformed the city's rapidly changing urban environment in the early republic, prior to the modern articulation of "ecology" as a scientific concept by late nineteenth-century naturalists such as Ernst Haeckel. I consider a variety of different media--including popular depictions and manifestations of Penn's Treaty Elm, fireplace and stove models by Charles Willson Peale, architectural designs for the Philadelphia Waterworks by Benjamin Henry Latrobe, and a self-portrait bust by the sculptor William Rush--in order to demonstrate that the human body served as a powerful creative metaphor in Philadelphia circa 1800, not only for understanding and representing natural processes in political or aesthetic terms, but also for framing critical public discourse about the city's actual environmental conditions. Specifically, I reveal how this metaphorical framework produced a variety of effects in art and architecture of the period, sometimes facilitating and at other times obscuring an understanding about the natural world as an arena of dynamic transformation. By revealing the previously unexplored environmental significance of the objects in question, my dissertation asserts that ecological change played an instrumental role in shaping artistic production and urban development in the decades following United States independence.
- Subject Terms:
- Ecocriticism -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- History.Ecology in art.Urban ecology (Sociology) -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- History.