Drawing on contemporaneously published accounts and journals of survivors, The Wreck of the Medusa is “a captivating gem about art’s relation to history” (Booklist) and ultimately “a thrilling read” (The Guardian).
Author: Jonathan Miles
Publisher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic
A “thrilling . . . captivating” account of the most famous shipwreck before the Titanic—a tragedy that inspired an unforgettable masterpiece of Western art (The Boston Globe). In June 1816, the Medusa set sail. Commanded by an incompetent captain, the frigate ran aground off the desolate West African coast. During the chaotic evacuation a privileged few claimed the lifeboats, while 147 men and one woman were herded aboard a makeshift raft that was soon cut loose by the boats that had pledged to tow it to safety. Those on the boats made it ashore and undertook a two-hundred-mile trek through the sweltering Sahara, but conditions were far worse on the drifting raft. Crazed, parched, and starving, the diminishing band fell into mayhem. When rescue arrived thirteen days later, only fifteen were alive. Among the handful of survivors were two men whose bestselling account of the maritime disaster scandalized Europe and inspired promising artist Théodore Géricault, who threw himself into a study of the Medusa tragedy, turning it into a vast canvas in his painting, The Raft of the Medusa. Drawing on contemporaneously published accounts and journals of survivors, The Wreck of the Medusa is “a captivating gem about art’s relation to history” (Booklist) and ultimately “a thrilling read” (The Guardian).
The title is the only allusion the play makes to the Géricault's dramatic painting of the survivors of the wreck of the Medusa off the coast of Senegal in 1816. After it ran aground, the ship's officers and their fami- lies took to the ...
Author: Jim Ellis
Publisher: U of Minnesota Press
Category: Performing Arts
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“One of the strangest and most horrifying stories ever told.”—John Fowles, author of The French Lieutenant's Woman “First rate.”—Newsweek In July, 1816, a French frigate ran aground on a sandbar forty miles off the coast of ...
Author: Alexander McKee
“One of the strangest and most horrifying stories ever told.”—John Fowles, author of The French Lieutenant's Woman “First rate.”—Newsweek In July, 1816, a French frigate ran aground on a sandbar forty miles off the coast of Africa. Forced to abandon ship, 150 men and women embarked on an overloaded makeshift raft. After twelve days of riots, mutiny, murder, and, ultimately, cannibalism, only fifteen were alive.
Shipwreck, mutiny, casting away, and the depredations of pirates have always caught the world's imagination. But the master story of disaster at sea will always be the wreck of the Medusa, an affair which shocked Europe as no similar ...
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Data referenced is taken from the research cited this paper. p 260 Details on Géricault's personal life were drawn from the following books: Miles's The Wreck of the Medusa, Athanassoglou-Kallmyer's Théodore Géricault, ...
Author: Tom de Freston
Publisher: Granta Books
Artist Tom de Freston has long had an obsession with Gricault's painting The Raft of the Medusa, and the troubling story behind its creation. The monumental canvas, which hangs in the Louvre, depicts a 19th century tragedy in which 150 people were drowned at sea on a raft lost in a stormy sea, when the ship Medusa was wrecked on shallow ground. When de Freston began making an artwork with Ali, a Syrian writer blinded by a bombing, The Raft's depiction of pain and suffering resonated powerfully with him, as did Gricault's awful life story. It spoke not only to Ali's story but to Tom's family history of trauma and anguish, offering him a passage out of the dark waters in which he found himself. In spellbinding, visceral prose, de Freston opens a window onto the magnetic frisson that runs between a past masterpiece and contemporary artistic endeavours. He asks powerful questions about how we might translate violence, fear and trauma into art, how we try to make sense of seemingly unthinkable acts, and the value in facing and depicting the darkest horrors.
(1791–1824) Raft of the Medusa (1818). The composition is based on the tragic story of the wreck of the Medusa that left a number of survivors to fend for themselves afloat a rickety raft and to undertake cannibalism.
As Jonathan Miles explained in his Wreck of the Medusa (2007), Géricault's painting was simultaneously a genre painting, an antiroyalist propaganda piece, and an exercise in catharsis for the deeply troubled and fatally ill artist.
Author: Andrew C A Jampoler
Publisher: Naval Institute Press
On August 25, 1833, the British convict ship Amphitrite, filled with more than one hundred women prisoners and their children along with a crew of thirteen, left London for a convict colony in New South Wales. Less than a week later, all but three died when a savage storm battered their ship to pieces on the beach at Boulogne--in sight of hundreds of horrified onlookers. Inexplicably, the captain, John Hunter, had refused offers of aid from the shore. Sensational news coverage of the calamity prompted an Admiralty investigation to find out who was responsible. The suspicion was that Hunter and the surgeon aboard rejected assistance because they feared the women would escape custody. Some blamed the doctor’s wife because she had refused to go ashore in the same boat with the convicts so no boat was launched. Colorfully set in the political and social context of early 19th century Great Britain, this account of the shipwreck is peopled with a fascinating cast of characters that includes John Wilks, the Paris correspondent of a London newspaper whose reporting triggered public emotions; Lord Palmerston, the British foreign secretary; William Hamilton, the British consul who led the investigation; Sarah Austin, a British expatriate whose heroism the night of the wreck merits an award; and a Prussian prince. Drawing from government records in England, Scotland, and France, and from contemporary reports, Andrew Jampoler spins a memorable sea tale that is entirely true yet rivals the best of fiction. Readers will find this latest addition to his growing body of works firmly cements Jampoler’s reputation as a master storyteller.
Essays on Art in 2015, with the chapter Shipwreck as its opening piece. 'Shipwreck is divided into two parts, the first of which relates the catastrophe of the shipwreck of the Medusa in 1816 while the second examines the genesis of ...
Author: Vanessa Guignery
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Category: Literary Criticism
Exploring the archives of the Man Booker prize-winning novelist Julian Barnes – including notebooks, drafts, typescripts and publishing correspondence – this book is an extraordinary in-depth study of the creative practice of a major contemporary novelist. In Julian Barnes from the Margins, Vanessa Guignery charts the genesis and publication history of all of Barnes's major novels, from his debut with Metroland, through Flaubert's Parrot and A History of the World in 10 1⁄2 Chapters to The Sense of an Ending.