Peepshows for All: Performing Words and the Travelling Showman
Zeitschrift für Anglistik und Amerikanistik
Reason for embargo
Publisher's policy as stated at http://www.degruyter.com/page/577
The ‘peepshow’ was one of the commonest and cheapest forms of optical entertainment for most of the nineteenth century: however, it has received relatively little scholarly attention. This essay explores the heyday of the peepshow through a detailed exploration of its exhibition spaces, performance practices, and audience experiences, as well as its relationship with other popular forms such as theatre, lecturing, and illustrated journalism. In particular, the essay argues that the peepshow should not be seen as predominantly a ‘visual’ show, but, rather, that the oral performance of the peep showman was crucial to the appeal and organisation of the exhibition. The visual tableaux were subservient to his narrative, and the showman needs to be seen as part of the growth of illustrated lecturing during the period.
This is the version of record originally published in Zeitschrift für Anglistik und Amerikanistik. Volume 63 (1), Pages 7–30, https://dx.doi.org/10.1515/zaa-2015-0002, March 2015. The journal is available at http://www.degruyter.com/view/j/zaa
Vol. 63, no. 1, pp. 7-30