The winner of the 2021 Patrick Scott Award for Best Graduate Paper has been announced:
Molly Lewis, Baylor University
“Literacy and Preservation in The Death and Burial of Cock Robin”
This paper considers an 1850 publication of the children’s nursery rhyme “The Death and Burial of Cock Robin” and its accompanying illustrations by Harrison Weir. The publication serves as educational material, guiding Victorian children through the process of losing a loved one while providing a window into the strange phenomenon of preservation culture in mid-nineteenth century Britain. Weir’s illustrations, reflecting popular taxidermy tableaux from the period, nuance this pedagogical project by drawing on the growing naturalist preoccupation of the nineteenth century and attendant preservation culture.