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Landscape Shaped by Blindness. Touching the Rock (1990) and Notes on Blindness (2016): Towards an Ec(h)ology of Vision

Abstract : In Touching the Rock (1990), the memoir he published after losing his sight, J. Hull identified a trip to his native Australia as a turning point in the erosion of his former self. Deprived of the views of his youth, he recalled experiencing the ultimate dispossession that came with blindness. This confirms by contrast the extent to which landscapes function as catalysts in the elaboration of identity. The affinity of the genre with sight explains its presence in Hull’s memoir, and in Middleton and Spinney’s adaptation of it—a film and a VR project entitled Notes on Blindness (2016). From windy Victoria to rainy Birmingham, the book and its adaptations show how blindness creatively disrupts the making of landscape. Blindscapes leave behind a normative model in which the view is appropriated, and the subject fashioned to “command” it. Through the working of echolocation, a new phenomenology of vision emerges, which reminds us of our participation in ec(h)osystems of perception.
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https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-02944935
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Submitted on : Friday, September 25, 2020 - 6:20:01 PM
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Diane Leblond. Landscape Shaped by Blindness. Touching the Rock (1990) and Notes on Blindness (2016): Towards an Ec(h)ology of Vision. Études britanniques contemporaines - Revue de la Société dʼétudes anglaises contemporaines, Presses universitaires de la Méditerranée, 2018, ⟨10.4000/ebc.4726⟩. ⟨hal-02944935⟩

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