Ernest Charles Wallcousins(1883 – 1976)

Ernest Wallcousins was a renowned and successful painter and illustrator famed for his portraits of Sir Henry Wood, the conductor of the Proms for over 50 years, and for that of Sir Winston Churchill. Wallcousins worked across a wide range of medium and subjects; a book illustrator in the early years of the 20th Century, he designed posters in the 1920’s, including one for the London Underground in 1925 and was renowned for his illustrations Continue Reading →

#EmptyShelf17 #3: The Ministry of Nostalgia by @owenhatherley

The story of Keep Calm and Carry On is largely one of the 21st century, rather than of the Second World War, when it was produced. Owen Hatherley uses the poster as a hook as he investigates the ‘nostalgia’ we have for 1940s, and use it to legitimise contemporary austerity. Hatherley refers to the use of this sense by the government as NOT heritage, but, quoting Raphael Samuel, as stealing ‘from the past at random’, as Continue Reading →

[BOOK PUBLICATION] Keep Calm and Carry On : The Truth Behind the Poster

Within my 1997 undergraduate dissertation, and my 2004 PhD thesis, I (unintentionally) provided the story of the now ubiquitous ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ (KCCO) poster (read an extract here), whilst I was writing about two very early posters produced by the British Government in the Second World War – Your Courage, and Freedom is in Peril. At the same time, the government produced KCCO, with the intention of saving it for use when under Continue Reading →

[RESEARCH] Keep Calm and Carry On: Visualising the People’s War in Posters

Session given this afternoon at MMU MODB research meetup: Keep Calm: Visualising the war in posters from Bex Lewis Second World War Posters Mass Communications Academic, @MMUBS. British Home Front Propaganda posters as researched for a PhD completed 2004. In 1997, unwittingly wrote the first history of the Keep Calm and Carry On poster, which she now follows with interest. https://twitter.com/ww2poster Like it? Share it…

Book Proposal: Turning PhD Thesis into Publication

It’s a modern way to announce something: Just submitted my @ww2poster book proposal to @I_W_M – let’s see if they’re interested! A photo posted by Bex Lewis (@drbexl) on Sep 3, 2016 at 9:25am PDT Yes, I’m waiting to see if the Imperial War Museum, or other, will be interested in publishing my PhD as a book. I still have many people ask when it’s going to be published, and despite the wish of many, I Continue Reading →

[SPEAKER] Keep Calm and Carry On: Visualising the People’s War in Posters

As the ceremony from Theipval, commemorating the Battle of the Somme, plays in the background, it reminded me that I’d not posted my slides from a session I presented to the Visual Culture Research Group at MMU on Wednesday afternoon, in which I gave an overview of my book proposal to convert my PhD to publication (very slow progress, yes!). My presentation came after Jim Aulich had talked about social visual media and the persistence of images, finding Continue Reading →

#EmptyShelf 2016 #22: Saving Bletchley Park by @Dr_Black with @stevyncolgan (Unbound, 2015)

Over the last few weeks I’ve watched the whole of 24 (208 episodes in total I believe), but today decided I was ready for reading a bit of paper! I’ve had Sue Black’s Saving Bletchley Park since Christmas in an e-book, and the hard copy turned up not long after … and I had promised myself that on this two weeks of annual leave (no work emails, no CPD, mostly sleep) I would read the Continue Reading →

[NEWS] Remembering Lord Asa Briggs 1921-2016

On a sunny day in June 2004, I was sat chewing my fingers in the grounds of what was then University College Winchester, awaiting the arrival of Lord Asa Briggs, the external examiner for my PhD thesis entitled ‘The Planning, Design and Reception of British Home Front Propaganda Posters of the Second World War’ (available on Ethos). He’d got stuck in traffic around Thruxton, but on arriving an hour late, indicated we should get on with Continue Reading →