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BRITISH SCHOLAR TO LECTURE ON RUSKIN AT
SOUTHEASTERN APRIL 28
HAMMOND – Roger Garside,
head of the Ruskin Programme at the University of Lancaster in the United
Kingdom, will present a guest lecture on "Counting the ‘Stones’: Ruskin
and the Computer” on April 28 at Southeastern Louisiana University.
The free 2 p.m. presentation is
scheduled for Sims Memorial Library and is sponsored by the Department
of English, the College of Business and Technology, and the Lyceum Arts
and Lectures Committee.
Ruskin’s “The Stones of Venice”
was a key work of the 19th century for architectural history and aesthetics,
economics, literary history, and cultural history,” said Southeastern English
professor David Hanson. “Combining the approaches of travel guide, architecture
primer, aesthetic treatise, historical narrative, and mythic journey, Ruskin
used Venice’s ‘stones,’ -- its architecture -- to argue that a nation’s
history and ethical character can be read in its architecture.”
In preparation for “Stones,” Ruskin
undertook years of research, including -- most importantly -- his own detailed
and very beautiful drawings of Venetian buildings.
“He produced numerous notebooks
and other works on paper, which now provide vital records of Venetian Gothic
and Renaissance architecture prior to damage caused by pollution and 19th-century
‘restoration,’” Hanson said. “The notebooks have never been published or
adequately studied until the Ruskin Programme was initiated.”
The Ruskin Programme at Lancaster
University is undertaking an electronic edition of these materials. Garside,
senior lecturer in computing at Lancaster, is working with education historian
Ian Bliss, and art historian Ray Haslam.
“Garside’s lecture on the Venice
notebooks project should interest students and faculty in computer science,
literature, art, economics, history, sociology, psychology – and. indeed,
the many other subjects that engaged Ruskin , who was a gifted amateur
geologist and botanist as well,” Hanson said.
“Many passages of ‘Stones’ are
hypnotically beautiful and rhetorically powerful and have entered the canon
of Victorian nonfictional prose,” he added.
Garside has authored several books
and numerous articles on computing. His interests, in addition to Ruskin
and art history, also include computational linguistics. He has contributed
thoughtfully to the relationship between computing and the humanities.