Open Educational Resources


Welcome to the fifth edition of VIDES, the online journal produced by the students of the Department for Continuing Education, University of Oxford, as part of their Master’s degree in Literature and Arts. As the name of the degree suggests, the course covers many different academic fields alongside literature: philosophy, history, material culture, history of art, theology and architecture. The journal features essays that combine these disciplines, enlightening understanding in one field through study of another.

Resources for this course

Displaying 1 - 20 of 23
Type Resource Description People Full details
Document A_Introduction

VIDES Volume 5, published in Spring 2017, features a wide range of topics and disciplines, drawing together common themes exploring image and...

Document A border to the unknown: folk ritual and interpretations of astrological phenomena in Edmond Halley’s A Description of the Passage of the Shadow of the Moon over England (1723) and James Catnach’s almanac, The Prophetic Messenger (1833), Anya Hancock

Halley’s widely circulated broadside presents one of the earliest rational analyses of a solar eclipse. In it, the Enlightenment scientist...

Document La Vita Nuova: Examining the theme of love in two of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s most famous works, the poem, The Blessed Damozel and the painting, Beata Beatrix, Andre R. Taylor-Morris

This essay will trace, briefly, Rossetti’s engagement with, and treatment of love. The Blessed Damozel was composed well before the death of...

Document Of Pictures and Poets: The humanist interpretation of Renaissance art in Browning’s Dramatic Lyrics and Walter Pater’s Studies in the History of the Renaissance, Aishwarya Anam

Walter Pater’s landmark Studies in the History of the Renaissance suggested that artists should attempt to capture emotive realities as...

Document The king, the book and the painting: the emergence of anti-Catholicism, as depicted in Beware the Cat by William Baldwin, published 1570 and King Edward VI and the Pope by unknown artist, circa 1575, Jacqueline Callcut

Edward VI’s dying thoughts were of the looming threat to his kingdom of ‘papistrye’. Others at the same time shared this concern: William Baldwin’...

Document ‘Crossing borders of representation’: Intersections of race, class and gender in Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s ‘Jenny’ and William Holman Hunt’s The Afterglow in Egypt, Illona Meyer

This paper considers the intersection of issues of race, class and gender in Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s ‘Jenny’ and William Holman Hunt’s The...

Document ‘Unsex Me Here’1: Mythical women and the threat of the femme fatale in the Victorian era, as seen in John Singer Sargent’s Ellen Terry as Lady Macbeth (1889) and Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s ‘Body’s Beauty’ (c.1866), Kathryn Waters

This article will consider depictions of two different mythical women in the Victorian period, namely the characters of Shakespeare’s Lady Macbeth...

Document Alive, yet dead: Mourning in the Victorian period, Sandra Franz

This article explores the attitude towards death through two different sources – a photograph of parents posing with their deceased infant as an...

Document Ethics and natural philosophy in the public representation of the scientific experiment: A reading of Wright of Derby’s An Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump (1768) in the light of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818), Christophe Boucherie

Joseph Wright of Derby’s painting of the Air Pump has often been described as a representation of the scientific enquiry and natural philosophy of...

Document Gothic ‘artefictions’: fabricating history in Horace Walpole’s Strawberry Hill and The Castle of Otranto, Amy Lim

Horace Walpole’s house at Strawberry Hill and his 1764 novel The Castle of Otranto are both considered landmarks in the development of...

Document Pre-Raphaelite and Victorian ideals outside ironwork: William Morris’ Red House and William Holman Hunt’s Isabella and the Pot of Basil exemplify craftsmanship in an age of technology, Tori Reimann

Against the backdrop of technological advancements of the day, artist William Morris’ architecture in Red House and artist William Holman Hunt’s...

Document The fear of the ‘Other’ and anti-semitism: Representations of the Jews in Punch and Bram Stoker’s Dracula in the light of rising English nationalism, Stephanie Winkler

Othering is a common practice: who am I? In order to answer this question, one must first define who one is not. In nineteenth-century England,...

Document ‘A perticuler sort of Christaline Glasse’: A taste of politeness and politics in the early eighteenth century, Sangeeta Bedi

This paper examines and compares two artefacts of the early eighteenth century; a heavy baluster wine glass c.1700 - 1710 and the poem Glass...

Document ‘Quis ineptae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus ut teneat se’: London, an eighteenth-century city in turmoil?1 Samuel Johnson’s London and William Hogarth’s Gin Lane

In many respects eighteenth-century London was a golden period of prosperity for the city. It was a period of economic affluence, with newly...

Document ‘Through the Gains of Industry we promote Art’: George Dawson’s Civic Gospel and the architecture of the Improvement Scheme, Matthew Key

This essay explores two artefacts from late Victorian Birmingham; a period in which the city went through remarkable transformation, culminating...

Document ‘Vagary wild and mental aberration styled’;1 liminality in the fantasmatic spaces of Christina Rossetti’s Goblin Market (1862) and Richard Dadd’s The Fairy Feller’s Master-Stroke (1864), Alexandra Gushurst-Moore

Through a comparison of this painting and poem, I will examine how the motif of the public forum functions as a liminal space within the fantastic...

Document Britons will never be slaves! Britannia and liberty as a construct of British national identity in James Thomson and Thomas Arne’s song Rule Britannia and Thomas Rowlandson’s engraving, The Contrast, 1792, British Liberty, French Liberty, Which is best?

In comparing and contrasting the song, Rule Britannia and the political print, The Contrast, 1792, British Liberty. French Liberty,...

Document Given a free rein? Representations of power in the stables at Houghton Hall, Norfolk, and John Wootton’s Sir Robert Walpole with his Hunter and Groom, Jemima Hubberstey

When Sir Robert Walpole first rose to political power from humble origins, he had much to prove to the world. In order to consolidate his position...

Document Representations of Lady Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Derby, Marcela Abadia

This article will focus on two representations of Lady Margaret Beaufort, King Henry VII’s mother. It will examine Bishop John Fisher’s ...

Document ‘Me thinks I see the love that shall be made’: two Restoration views of St James Park, Christian Verdu

The Restoration saw a strong dependence of the visual arts and verbal arts upon each other. This paper analyses one painting and one poem about a...