Includes bibliographical references and index.
Part. 1: Picture theory -- 1. The pictorial turn -- 2. Metapictures -- 3. Beyond comparison: picture, text, and method -- Part. 2: Textual pictures -- 4Visible language : Blake's art of writing -- 5. Ekphrasis and the other -- 6. Narrative, memory, and slavery -- Part. 3: Pictorial texts -- 7. Ut pictura theoria : abstract painting and language -- 8. Word, image, and object: wall labels for Robert Morris -- 9. The photographic essay : four case studies -- Part. 4: Pictures and power -- 10. Illusion : looking at animals looking -- 11. Realism, irrealism, and ideology : after Nelson Goodman -- Part. 5: Pictures and the public sphere -- 12. The violence of public art : do the right thing -- 13. From CNN to JFK -- Conclusion: Some pictures of representation.
What precisely, W.J.T. Mitchell asks, are pictures (and theories of pictures) doing now, in the late twentieth century, when the power of the visual is said to be greater than ever before, and the "pictorial turn" supplants the "linguistic turn" in the study of culture? This book by one of America's leading theorists of visual representation offers a rich account of the interplay between the visible and the readable across culture, from literature to visual art to the mass media.