Elkins asks about objects that are too violent, too sexually charged, or too beautiful to look at directly. When we see a naked body, we either stare lasciviously or. For the art historian James Elkins, there is no such thing as “just looking. inconsistent, and undependable, he says in The Object Stares Back. In Elkins’s view, even the simplest, most reductive statement that can be made about seeing, “the beholder looks at the object,” is charged with.

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James Elkins — present is an art historian and art critic. These 2 locations in South Ojbect It is difficult to understand. Jan 10, Murray rated it liked it. Although the process of seeing is a mystery whose eklins will remain forever unfathomable, Elkins helps readers to enter into the mystery and to make us more aware of the vast beauty, subtlety, and complexity that we often fail to see in the world around us.

Feb 15, Guy rated it really liked it Shelves: Apr 17, Diane rated it it was amazing. Public Private login e. Open Preview See a Problem?

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If you own the book and are not borrowing it, I suggest you do the same. View online Borrow Buy Freely available Show 0 more links Now if I step back from the shelf and look quickly across atares bookcases I speed up that same process a hundredfold.


Blindness is not the opposite of vision, but its constant companion, and even the foundation of seeing itself. Objects molt and alter in accord with what we need them to be, and we change ourselves by the mere act of seeing. The University of Queensland. Here, in his own words, is the crux of his argument: Bodies, Elkins says, are among the fundamental things that the eye seeks in every scene: Summary At first it appears that nothing could be easier than seeing.

Elkins’ thoughts on sight and seeing is a multifaceted deconstruction on how we view and are viewed by objects we encounter. To ask other readers questions about The Object Stares Backplease sign up.

The Sign of Jona Thomas Merton. Every time I hear the phrase “Just looking” I think about this book. Seeing is detached and efficient and rational.

If I step up to a shelf and look at the books one by one, I can remember something about each. Visit our Beautiful Books page and find lovely books for kids, photography lovers and more. May 04, Z rated it it was amazing.

On the Nature jamed Seeing by James Elkins.

The Object Stares Back : James Elkins :

Just a moment while we sign you in to stqres Goodreads account. Blindness is not the opposite of vision, but its constant companion, and even the foundation of seeing itself. Separate different tags with a comma.


This is a book that questions the processes involved in seeing and understanding. I liked a few chapters a lot.


Some of the most stimulating parts of the book for me were the discussio Elkins provides a sensitive, literate inquiry. Description At first it appears that nothing could be easier than seeing.

Published July 15th by Mariner Books first published This book was part of my visual communication and culture syllabus. Worth the effort and I’ll probably get more use out of reading it than I realize right now.

A Writer’s Diary Virginia Woolf. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. There are no words for how much I disliked this book.

Media reporter, reviewer, producer, guest booker, blogger. What the deconstructionists did for language, bacl its grave limitations and fallibilities, Elkins attempts to do By clicking on “Submit” you agree that you have read and agree to the Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.