Html and Comparing “Total Works of Art” Across Centuries

Figure 1: The Savoy, Vol. 2, cover by Audrey Beardsley (1896)

Learning about HTML coding with Reginald Beatty was extremely informative and helpful. I have very little experience with coding, but I’ve always wanted to learn at least the basics of HTML. Reginald presented the basics seamlessly and I feel like I learned something both applicable to this class and my own personal development. I feel ready to take on the magazine page and test out my new skills!

I found Koenraad Claes’s “Introduction” to The Late-Victorian Little Magazine most interesting from this week’s reading. Claes explains the little magazine status as a  “Total Work of Art” — a German ideology for aesthetic cohesion. Essentially, Claes describes how both the text and the images work together to present the magazine as a piece of art in its totality, a feat that other periodicals were not able to accomplish at the time, resulting in its popularity (5). This “total work of art” design leaves much of the onus on the editor to ensure the entire work is cohesive. While reviewing these magazines now, it’s incredibly interesting to see how editors strung together seemingly unrelated images, texts, and concepts, to present an artistic experience through the vehicle of the magazine. I would like to do further research to learn how the “Total Work of Art” concept has transformed over time to establish the magazines we know today. Do magazines such as “GQ” Or “People” follow the same concept?

Figure 2: People Magazine, front cover (January 2020).

Considering they all follow specific branding and marketing, I imagine even modern periodicals have roots in the German aesthetic ideology of total works of art. Are we able to compare something like the totality of The Savoy Vol. 2, 1896 (see figure 1) and compare it to People’s Magazine? (see figure 2).










Work Cited

Claes, Koenraad. “Introduction.” The Late-Victorian Little Magazine, Edinburgh University Press, 2017, pp. 1-15.

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