And the analogies between the vignettesque and the picturesque are quite strong, I think. Both require a (mental) frame; that is, they don't deal with kinds of beauty that are indefinite and unrestricted but, even if they deal with something vast, do so in a way that can be expressed compactly and with borders. As the picturesque is that which expresses the particular kind of beauty agreeable to a picture, or else that which pleases from some quality capable of being expressed in a picture, so too the vignettesque is that which expresses the particular kind of beauty agreeable to a literary vignette, or else that which pleases from some quality capable of being expressed in such a vignette. As Gilpin says that the picturesque concerns 'rough' beauty, so we can say that the vignettesque concerns 'striking' beauty -- in both cases, we are dealing with a kind of beauty that involves an apparent breaking up of symmetries and continuities.
We can perhaps even make the analogy stronger. As the picturesque is based on the composition of the scene, so the vignettesque is based on its memorability. As the picturesque is a form of beauty especially capable of being captured in a pictorial sketch, so too the vignettesque is a form of beauty especially capable of being captured in a literary sketch. In fact, this analogy between literary sketch and picturesque sketch has been recognized before; Washington Irving notes in The Sketch Book:
I have wandered through different countries and witnessed many of the shifting scenes of life. I cannot say that I have studied them with the eye of a philosopher, but rather with the sauntering gaze with which humble lovers of the picturesque stroll from the window of one print-shop to another; caught sometimes by the delineations of beauty, sometimes by the distortions of caricature, and sometimes by the loveliness of landscape. As it is the fashion for modern tourists to travel pencil in hand, and bring home their portfolios filled with sketches, I am disposed to get up a few for the entertainment of my friends.
Sketch of the vignettesque and sketch of the picturesque both rely heavily on suggestion; the picturesque sketch suggests by way of a line, the vignettesque sketch by way of a few narratively connected details. And we might even say that, as travelogues are to the picturesque, so memoirs are to the vignettesque. When people travel, they want to experience the picturesque (hence the popularity of photographs), but they also want to experience the vignettesque, the little things that can be put into a story for others.
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