Opticon 1826 inaugural issue
1 November 2006
The UCL student-led journal 'Opticon 1826' has released its inaugural issue, featuring contributions from both staff and students on a diverse range of thought-provoking subjects.
Launched in May 2006 with support from the UCL Graduate School, 'Opticon 1826' is an initiative by UCL graduate students and internally reviewed. The twice-yearly journal intends to provide a forum in which disciplines can cross paths and have an opportunity to engage with assumptions, perspectives and methodologies from outside their own field of study.
Initially open to entries from four UCL faculties, 'Opticon 1826' will welcome contributions from all UCL faculties from the subsequent issue onwards.
Miss Gesche Ipsen (UCL Comparative Literature), 'Opticon 1826' Editor-in-Chief said: "The journal is designed to be a forum in the true sense: a place in which we can all gather and consider each other's offerings: weigh them, declare them wanting or complete, negotiate a price if we choose, and walk away with them or from them, however we wish."
This first issue includes 'Multilingual London and its Literatures', in which UCL Honorary Professor of Dutch Reinier Salverda explains how the multilingual and multicultural nature of London deepens its literary life, making this city "a veritable 'Tower of Babel', with many different floors, balconies, salons, and extensions".
In 'Building Bridges and Breaking Boundaries: Modernity and Agoraphobia', Josh Holmes (UCL Psychology) asks whether agoraphobia is a side effect of modernity. Matteo Melioli's (UCL Bartlett School of Architecture) 'Seeing the Unseen. Optic, Acoustic and the Space Between' is a meditation on vision and sound in architectural space, focusing on parallels between St Mark's Basilica in Venice and a Venetian petrochemicals plant.
UCL President and Provost Professor Malcolm Grant said: "Here is an imaginative approach to publication that perfectly reflects UCL's ethos of the past 180 years. Unpretentious, intellectually uncompromising, wide-ranging in its scope and vision, and above all, interesting. It hasn't been brought together by an international publishing house with a board of distinguished editors drawn from prestigious universities. None of it. It's been done for the joy of it by a group of dedicated UCL graduate students, and it has all the liveliness and immediacy you would expect. I welcome it with enormous pleasure and look forward to reading future instalments for years to come."