Cambridge Catalogue  
  • Help
Home > Catalogue > Graphic Design, Print Culture, and the Eighteenth-Century Novel
Graphic Design, Print Culture, and the Eighteenth-Century Novel
Google Book Search

Search this book


  • 110 b/w illus.
  • Page extent: 312 pages
  • Size: 247 x 174 mm
  • Weight: 0.876 kg

Library of Congress

  • Dewey number: 823/.509
  • Dewey version: 21
  • LC Classification: PR851 .B355 2003
  • LC Subject headings:
    • English fiction--18th century--History and criticism
    • Literature publishing--England--History--18th century
    • Book design--England--History--18th century
    • Printing--England--History--18th century
    • Richardson, Samuel,--1689-1761.--Clarissa

Library of Congress Record


 (ISBN-13: 9780521819084 | ISBN-10: 0521819083)

The uniformity of the eighteenth-century novel in today's paperbacks and critical editions no longer conveys the early novel's visual exuberance. Janine Barchas explains how during the genre's formation in the first half of the eighteenth century, the novel's material embodiment as printed book rivalled its narrative content in diversity and creativity. Innovations in layout, ornamentation and even punctuation found in, for example, the novels of Richardson, an author who printed his own books, help shape a tradition of early visual ingenuity. From the beginning of the novel's emergence in Britain, prose writers including Daniel Defoe, Jonathan Swift, and Henry and Sarah Fielding experimented with the novel's appearance. Lavishly illustrated with more than 100 graphic features found in eighteenth-century editions, this important study aims to recover the visual context in which the eighteenth-century novel was produced and read.

• Interdisciplinary approach, combining literary criticism, editorial theory, book history, feminism and cultural studies • Lavishly illustrated with graphics from early novels • Will appeal to literary and cultural historians as well as print historians


Acknowledgements; List of illustrations; 1. Expanding the literary text: a textual studies approach; 2. The frontispiece: counterfeit authority and the author portrait; 3. The title page: advertisement, identity, and deceit; 4. Clarissa's musical score: a novel's politics engraved on copper plate; 5. The space of time: graphic design and temporal distortion; 6. Sarah Fielding's David Simple: a case study in the interpretive significance of punctuation; 7. The list and index: a culture of collecting imprints upon the novel.

Prize Winner

SHARP Book Prize 2003 - Winner


Review of the hardback: '… a handsomely illustrated book, argued with panache.' The Times Literary Supplement

Review of the hardback: 'A welcome addition … beautifully produced by Cambridge. Because of its ornamental and substantive merits it belongs in every personal and institutional library concerned with the eighteenth-century novel.' British Journal of Eighteenth-Century Studies

Review of the hardback: '… Barchas's discussion of the interpretive role of these graphic features, particularly in relation to the novel's formal development, is nuanced and savvy; in recalling attention to the visual context and materiality of the early novel, it opens the way to a potentially rich new area of discussion.' Sharp News

Review of the hardback: 'For the first time, we have a book that systematically examines the presentation of the novel as a part of its meaning … the great strength of this beautifully presented, lavishly illustrated, and genially written book is its vivid recapturing of the complexity and excitement of the book market in the early eighteenth century … a delightful, informative, and highly suggestive survey of printing techniques that will compel any reader of the early novel to see the form in a new, and richly material fashion.' Libraries & Culture

Review of the hardback: '… Graphic Design will have, and deserves to have, many imitators.' The Library

'Barchas in Graphic Design, Print Culture, and the Eighteenth-Century Novel offers a fascinating composite portrait of this exuberantly bookish age.' The Wordsworth Circle

printer iconPrinter friendly version AddThis