Loizeaux, Elizabeth Bergmann 1950-
LOIZEAUX, Elizabeth Bergmann 1950-
Home—51 Walnut Ave., Takoma Park, MD 20912. Office—University of Maryland, Department of English, 3101 Susquehanna Hall, College Park, MD 20742. E-mail—[email protected].
University of Maryland, College Park, assistant professor, then associate professor of English, 1980—, director of English undergraduate studies, 1990-95. University of Sheffield, Sheffield, England, visiting professor, 1985-86; teacher at Yeats International Summer School, 1996, 1998, and Tübingen University (Germany), 2002.
Modern Language Association, South Atlantic Modern Language Association, Modernist Studies Association, Society for Textual Scholarship, International Association of Word and Image Studies.
National Endowment for the Humanities summer stipend, 1982; Lilly/CTE fellow, 1995-96.
Yeats and the Visual Arts, Rutgers University Press (New Brunswick, NJ), 1986.
(Editor, with Neil Fraistat) Reimagining Textuality: Textual Studies in the Late Age of Print, University of Wisconsin Press (Madison, WI), 2002.
Contributor of articles to journals, including Yeats: An Annual of Critical and Textual Studies, Word & Image, and Review.
English professor and William Butler Yeats scholar Elizabeth Bergmann Loizeaux is the author of Yeats in the Visual Arts and is coeditor of Reimagining Textuality: Textual Studies in the Late Age of Print.
Yeats in the Visual Arts is an in-depth study of the way pre-Raphaelite painting, William Morris's tapestry, William Blake's woodcuts, theatrical design, Byzantine art, and Renaissance sculpture influenced Yeats's poetry as he moved through various stages in his work. Stephen Gurney, in Modern Age, explained, "Throughout his life Yeats consciously or unconsciously expressed his sense of technical and thematic affinity with the tapestry makers, artists, and workers in wood, metal, bronze, or marble who engrossed his imagination.…ForYeats repetition of line and form in the visual arts was analogous to the patterning of rhythm and sound in poetry." Gurney called Loizeaux's book "readable and always engaging." He wrote, "Her thesis is a sound one and surprisingly not fully explored until the appearance of this handsome and visually sumptuous volume." Gurney concluded that Loizeaux's book "goes further in both detail and depth" than any other on the subject. "Her understanding of the ways in which Yeats altered his technique to give his verse the kind of tactile, physical presence that we associate with sculpture is especially intelligent in its sensitivity to verbal effects and poetic strategies."
However, Terence Diggory, writing in Yeats, found the final chapter on sculpture unconvincing because it changes methodology. Whereas Loizeaux's first argument—that Yeats was guided throughout his life by pre-Raphaelite principles which he reinterpreted over time—is pursued historically, her second—that sculpture replaced painting as Yeats's primary analogy for his poetry—is pursued theoretically. "Her speculations are provocative," Diggory claimed, "But to grow beyond the status of speculation, they need more support from the scholarship on these topics." Nevertheless, he concluded, "In some ways it is the most promising [chapter] in the directions it points for future research."
E. F. Harden, in Choice, viewed the book as Gurney did, as "the most closely argued study" on the subject to date. Harden was pleased by Loizeaux's use of many of Yeats's major poems to develop her thesis. Michael Hennessy, in Library Journal, likewise found that Loizeaux "ably demonstrates" the influence of the visual arts on Yeats's work.
Reimagining Textuality is a collection of nine essays; it is divided into three sections, with a response at the end of each section. The essayists, most from university English departments, specialize in cultural studies, textual editing, and verbal-visual studies. They write about technology and its impact on the production of texts; integrating visual elements into text; and the relationships between the spoken and written word, including the element of audience. Jennifer Burek Pierce, in a review for American Communication Journal, wrote that the book "suggests a conversation about the nature of text and textual studies in the contemporary information environment. This conversation, though, is a free-flowing one, and in the end, the authors do not find themselves on the same page. Rather, their views are divergent in tone, style, content, and conclusion.… Many of these essays are, as the book's title suggests, speculative and creative." Claire MacDonald, in the Times Literary Supplement, commented that Loizeaux and Fraistat "argue that technologies do not merely replace one another; instead, they shift in their relationship, and sometimes the crossroads opens to new pasts as well as new futures."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Choice, May, 1987, E. F. Harden, review of Yeats and the Visual Arts, p. 1398.
Library Journal, January, 1987, Michael Hennessy, review of Yeats and the Visual Arts, pp. 89-90.
Modern Age, winter, 1988, Stephen Gurney, review of Yeats and the Visual Arts,, pp. 81-87.
Times Literary Supplement, August 2, 2002, Claire MacDonald, review of Reimagining Textuality: Textual Studies in the Late Age of Print,, p. 22.
Victorian Studies, summer, 1988, Bruce Gardiner, review of Yeats and the Visual Arts, pp. 612-614.
Yeats (annual), 1987, Terence Diggory, review of Yeats and the Visual Arts, pp. 246-252.
American Communication Journal,http://acjournal.org/ (spring, 2002), Jennifer Burek Pierce, review of Reimagining Textuality: Textual Studies in the Late Age of Print.