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Designing Preservation: Waterways in the Works and Patterns of William Morris

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Author(s): Elysia French

Journal: The Brock Review
ISSN 1188-9071

Volume: 11;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 97;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: art history | environmentalism | ecocriticism | William Morris | textiles | environmental studies | design

ABSTRACT
Historians have demonstrated awareness of William Morris’s environmental ideologies yet have widely ignored this aspect of his work. Morris’s writings on the environment have commonly been described as romantic, escapist, and utopian; if this remains how they are interpreted, historians risk losing valuable insights into the innovative and progressive qualities of Morris’s environmentalism. William Morris’s environmental ideologies were innovative for his time and applicable for today. Through and exploration of his designs, in which he employs the Thames River as a tool of ecological commentary, it will become clear how Morris’s concerns for environmental preservation, freedom, and justice were embedded within his art.
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