The Public Domain Review

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Get Thee to a Phalanstery: or, How Fourier Can Still Teach Us to Make Lemonade

Wednesday 1 May 2019 at 02:00

Hot on the heels of the French revolution — by way of extravagant orgies, obscure taxonomies, and lemonade seas — Charles Fourier offered up his blueprint for a socialist utopia, and in the process also one of the most influential early critiques of capitalism. Dominic Pettman explores Fourier’s radical, bizarre, and often astonishingly modern ideas, and how they might guide us in our own troubled times.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/essay/get-thee-to-a-phalanstery-or-how-fourier-can-still-teach-us-to-make-lemonade/


Abide With Me (1914)

Tuesday 30 April 2019 at 09:24

Version from Olive Kline and Elsie Baker of one of the most popular hymn's of all time.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/abide-with-me-1914


Plants and Their Application to Ornament (1896)

Thursday 25 April 2019 at 17:04

Eugène Grasset's wonderful pictorial summation of his key ideas about natural forms and decorative motifs.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/plants-and-their-application-to-ornament-1896


August Strindberg's Celestographs (1893–4)

Wednesday 24 April 2019 at 17:49

The Swedish playwright's attempt to capture the night sky by the use of photographic plates alone.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/august-strindberg-s-celestographs-1893-4


Loos, Lewdness, and Literature: Tales from the Boghouse

Wednesday 17 April 2019 at 02:00

In the early 1730s, a mysterious editor (known only as "Hurlothrumbo") committed to print a remarkable anthology: transcriptions of the graffiti from England's public latrines. For all its misogynistic and scatological tendencies, this little-known book of "latrinalia" offers a unique and fascinating window into Georgian life. Maximillian Novak explores.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/essay/tales-from-the-boghouse


The Notre-Dame Cathedral in Art (1460–1921)

Tuesday 16 April 2019 at 18:41

Highlights from the many centuries of artworks to feature the iconic building — from its illuminated punctuation of medieval skylines to grainy detailed studies at the birth of photography.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/the-notre-dame-cathedral-in-art-1460-1921


The Book of Dreams and Ghosts (1897)

Wednesday 10 April 2019 at 17:48

Seventy eight weird happenings are contained in this volume, from a demon strangling Devonian farmers in 1682 to a poltergeist terrorising a contemporary Chinese couple.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/the-book-of-dreams-and-ghosts-1897


Bracelli's Bizzarie di Varie Figure (1624)

Tuesday 9 April 2019 at 19:04

Giovanni Battista Bracelli's extraordinary book of prescient prints that predate the Cubist movement by a good three centuries.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/bracelli-s-bizzarie-di-varie-figure-1624


The Khan’s Drinking Fountain

Thursday 4 April 2019 at 15:26

Of all the things described in William of Rubruck's account of his travels through 13th-century Asia, perhaps none is so striking as the remarkably ornate fountain he encountered in the Mongol capital which — complete with silver fruit and an angelic automaton — flowed with various alcoholic drinks for the grandson of Genghis Khan and guests. Devon Field explores how this Silver Tree of Karakorum became a potent symbol, not only of the Mongol Empire's imperial might, but also its downfall.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/essay/the-khans-drinking-fountain


Werner's Nomenclature of Colours (1814)

Tuesday 2 April 2019 at 16:56

Extending Werner's system, this is Patrick Syme's classic taxonomic guide to the colours of the natural world.

Source: https://publicdomainreview.org/collection/werner-s-nomenclature-of-colours-1814