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2.1 Building a believable world

Writing is a perceptual art, one in which images are created via language in order for the reader to make meaning. It is therefore imperative that the writer's powers of perception are alert. Writing is a process of becoming aware, of opening the senses to ways of grasping the world, ways that may previously have been blocked. Often we take the world around us for granted, we are so immersed in habit. All of our lives contain relative degrees of routine. We go to sleep, we eat, we go to work.
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1.1 Using life experiences in your fiction

Creative writing courses and manuals often offer the advice ‘write what you know’. This is undoubtedly good advice, yet what exactly does it mean? Many writers testify to using their life experiences – their memories and their everyday perceptions – as a source for their fiction or poetry, as well as for their autobiographies and memoirs. Yet these experiences aren't necessarily extraordinary in themselves. You don't have to have led an unusual or exotic life in order to write. You do
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Learning outcomes

After studying this unit you should:

  • be able to articulate your own thoughts on the notion of ‘write what you know’;

  • be equipped to write ‘blind’ descriptions of known objects and note new observations;

  • have an enhanced ability to list sensory perceptions;

  • be able to write short texts about a personal memory of either a place or a character.


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6.6 Delacroix – exoticism and animal energy

It is significant that Delacroix characterised his genius as that of a wild animal, as the energy and exoticism of such creatures also inspired him as subjects. He went to see wild animals in the Jardin des Plantes, a botanical and zoological garden in Paris, and was fascinated by the large cats there (see Plate 43, A Young Tiger playing with its Mother). But, as with his Romantic predecessor Géricault, it was above all the horse that he used to express Romantic fury (see Plate 44,
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5.2 Sardanapalus – passion and futility

For many of Delacroix’s Romantic contemporaries, versed in Byronic despondency and melancholic ruminations on the futility and transitory nature of worldly pleasure, Sardanapalus expressed the condition of ennui, (melancholy or listlessness) – a kind of inner emptiness, languor, stultification and world-weariness. (The term ennui had been used in medieval French to signify profound sadness, disgust and personal anguish from the seventeenth century onwards it was used
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2.11 Birth of the ‘Romantic’

The ‘ardent and animated’ aspects of Delacroix’s work made commentators describe his large canvases of the 1820s as ‘Romantic’. By the end of the decade, he was regarded by many younger artists as the leader of a new, modern school of painting that in a spirit of revolutionary fervour had thrown off the shackles of a worn-out classicism. And yet, when a stranger who had seen Sardanapalusreferred to Delacroix as the ‘Victor Hugo of painting’, the artist responded, ‘You a
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5 Conclusion

The great advantage of history painting as a form of propaganda was that it could appear to be nothing of the kind. Whereas an official portrait of Napoleon fairly obviously served to focus loyalty towards the nation's leader, a depiction of a battle could be seen, on the one hand, as a work of art in its own right and, on the other, as an objective record of a historical event. This meant that the viewers whose attention was attracted by such a picture would be likely to absorb the version o
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3.1 The limits of propaganda

Although portraits of Napoleon were manufactured on a large scale and distributed widely, they could only act as propaganda for the regime up to a certain point. Given the institutional circumstances sketched out in the introduction to this unit, the most effective way to use art as propaganda was with large-scale history paintings that would attract the attention and excite the interest of a large audience when they were exhibited in the Salon. State patronage for such painting was revived o
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5.6.3 Honeymoons

Image 65 Photographer/Painter: Alfred Pettit, Keswick. Subject: Ben Naylor and his new wife Carrie, née Birchall, on their honeymooon in the Lake District, c.1880.<
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5.6.2 Engagement and marriage

Of all rites of passage celebrated in the Victorian family album, those taken at the time of engagement and marriage are by far the most numerous. This testifies to the importance vested in marriage by the Victorians. The custom of commissioning oil or miniature portraits at the time of an engagement or marriage was well established before the advent of photography. Photography enabled couples on more modest incomes to indulge a practice that became widespread among working-class families by
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1 Popular responses to the South African War, 1899–1902

It is convenient for purposes of comparison to examine popular responses to the Boer War or South African War of 1899 to 1902, which involved Britain in a war for the Transvaal, and to the Spanish-American War of 1898, which was fought, ostensibly at least, to free the Cuban people from Spanish oppression.

The South African War certainly involved the British working population. The war was fought by members of the working and lower-middle classes, many of whom volunteered. And the war w
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Introduction

Historians on both sides of the Atlantic have argued that the empire was not an issue of popular interest in the late nineteenth-century Britain and the United States. This unit examines some of the evidence available to assess the truth of this claim. More broadly, the unit raises questions related to evidence: is it possible to discover what ‘ordinary’ people thought about expansionism?

‘I couldn't give a damn’; ‘I don't know anything about politics’; ‘Why don't they lea
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2.2 Insider/outsider perspectives

Social historians have long argued that we must study history ‘from the underside’, if we want to thoroughly understand a society. In other words, it is not sufficient to have a top-down knowledge of a society's institutions and politics. We need also to examine how ordinary, ‘unimportant’ people operate within a culture: what influences them and what they can (and cannot) influence; how they see their role in society and how others see it. The outsider view is the view from the outsi
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2.1 New perspectives

The purpose of studying religion is to make the strange familiar, and the familiar strange.

Exercise

We would encourage you now to jot do
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3.3 The musicians at work

4.11.1 Debating and negotiating meaning

The two briefings in Boxes 4.10 and 4.11 illustrate other technological approaches to supporting socially based forms of knowledge generation, with the common theme of facilitating negotiation and debate among stakeholders. These are examples of tools which can assist communication between communities of practice as they seek to understand each other's perspectives.

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4.8.1 Capturing meetings

Internet meetings and broadcasts can be easily recorded and replayed because everything is mediated digitally: the text of emails, the audio stream and the slides used. However, face-to-face meetings are by far still the most common way to present and discuss issues in organisations, and the richness of personal presence makes them unlikely to disappear. How can face-to-face meetings be ‘captured’? Traditional written minutes provide a rough summary of points discussed, but provide only t
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3.4.1 Integrating memory systems into the flow of work

There has been a substantial amount of research interest over the last decade in group/organisational memory systems. For example, software researchers have investigated the possibility of capturing design rationale, the key reasoning that underpins design decisions (Moran and Carroll, 1996). However, time and again projects have failed. A given information codification scheme encourages particular ways of thinking about information and the problem at hand: typically, information must
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4.1 Choosing customers

Think about your own organisation – or your own experiences as a customer. I'm sure you'll agree that, over the last few years, customers have become very sophisticated. They expect higher standards, lower costs, and a wide range of goods and services that are provided at their convenience. If an organisation does not provide what they want, they find one that can.

Most companies have experienced changes in their markets, such as new customer demands and expectations, and new competit
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5 Legacy fundraising

Legacies are an extremely important source of income for many charities. In the UK they represent well over a quarter of the total income from individuals of the top 500 fundraising charities, with a particularly strong showing in healthcare and animal charities (Sargeant and Jay, 2004). Slightly fewer than half of adults in the UK have written wills, but more than one in ten of those who do, leave charitable bequests (Radcliffe, 2007). Figures like this suggest there is plenty of potential t
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