“[Mitchell] undertakes to explore the nature of images by comparing them with words, or, more precisely, by looking at them from the viewpoint of verbal. “[Mitchell] undertakes to explore the nature of images by comparing them with words, or, more precisely, by looking at them from the viewpoint. INTRODUCTION In , W. J. T. Mitchell published his ‘ Iconology’, with a sequel – an ‘applied iconology’ – in ‘Picture theory’. His program is ambitious.

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Iconology: Image, Text, Ideology

Mitchell is deceived by superficial similarities concealing fundamental differences, that he can conclude that there is no such thing like a purely pictorial image.

Needless to remind that none of these arguments is valid.

It would lead us too far here, to analyse – in the best tradition of W. But such equation makes all the more urgent the question what may well be the difference between image and text? Flora rated it it was ok Feb 23, Mitchell, for his part, comments that literature is not an ‘aural art’, because it can be read, and because also the deaf can learn to read and speak Many a title belongs to this kind of texts ‘hors image’.

The same goes for music; Isoldes Liebestod is not about sound, but about love.

This book led me to Hans Belting’s books and articles on similar subjects that are more useful, a new Iconography that draw a link between image and media and reintroduce the body by asking how images work on us. Why is this investigation on the relation of image to language significant?


Iconology: Image, Text, Ideology by W.J.T. Mitchell

Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime. It must be stated with emphasis indeed that thinking does not proceed through manipulating images, but rather signs. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: It is only because W. We want to make two remarks here. The visible, hence is not opposed to the invisible: Mitchell you will search in vain to find one – no wonder, since to him the image is ‘linguistic in its inner workings’. It is trivial, hence, to state that the image depends on a ‘text’, whether we are talking about the knowledge of the Bible, which was quasi universal in de Western world up to recently, or about the acquaintance with the ‘epic of art’: There is only talk of opposites when the whole array of signs is contrasted with the image.

Email Address never made public. In his introduction, the author promises to answer two questions: Valentiina Niieves Hndz rated it it was amazing Aug 08, February 7, at 1: And that makes us ask the deeper question whether there is such a thing as a partition of the world in a visible and an invisible realm, partition which would coincide with the opposition between word and image.

Iconology, Visual Culture, and Media Aesthetics. On the other hand, images are deemed superior when deemed as being capable of communicating universality, truth, and etc. In Picture TheoryMitchell repeats almost the same discussion on the relation between images and words but with a slight variation. There is no such ‘convention’ with regard to the relation between an image and its original: ComiXology Thousands of Digital Comics.


For, however much W. For literature, we could construct a parallel approach as follows: Mitchell’s ‘allegoric’ eagle may function as a sign for the abstract idea ‘courage’.

Essays on Verbal and Visual Representation. That is also the case when we have to resort to a text to know what there is to be seen on the image altogether, as when Luc Tuymans paints a white stain, that turns out to be a stain form an empty slide-projector; or mitchelll the artwork is an example to a theory, as with Robert Morris’ ‘Slab’ as analysed by Mitchell himselfff.

Iconology: Image, Text, Ideology – W. J. T. Mitchell – Google Books

Mitchell comes to face the task of formulating the difference between images and other signs in terms of a new opposition icohology and therewith to indicate on what grounds such a distinction can be made. Such imageconstitting signs differ from objectconstituting signs in the real world in the same way as different fonts differ from each other, while they are read as the same iconologgy nevertheless.

Or to quote Tom Wolfe via Mitchell: The introduction says “This is a book about the things people say about images”.

Henceforward, the image is merely a special kind of sign – although it remains unclear how it can be discerned from other signs see below. His program is ambitious: But the world that is disclosed by all these appearances is in essence the same: