Perpetuating the memory of one of the greatest men of the Victorian age

Online talk: A Materialist’s Paradise: William Morris and the Kelmscott Press

August 7, 2021 18.00 - 19.00

In the 1891 review of News from Nowhere “A Materialist’s Paradise,” Martin Hewlett charged William Morris with “exaggerat[ing] the dependence of human nature upon its environment,” and complained that Morris presents “the conditions of human welfare [as] physical” (819). In this lecture Dr Miller will consider Kelmscott Press as Morris’s true “materialist paradise,” the creative project that most fully expresses his refusal to relegate the natural world to the debased category of the profane. Focusing especially on the materials from which the Kelmscott books are made, Dr Miller will interpret the project of the press in reaction to industrial ecologies and in light of the burgeoning environmental movement of the 19th century.

Dr Elizabeth Miller is Professor of English at the University of California, Davis. She is author of Slow Print: Literary Radicalism and Late Victorian Print Culture and Framed: The New Woman Criminal in British Culture at the Fin de Siècle, and co-editor of Teaching William Morris. She sits on the Editorial Advisory Board of The Journal of William Morris Studies.

This is an online talk on Zoom; you will be sent an email with the joining details on the day of the talk.

Please note that bookings close 3 hours before the start of the event.

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