The Photograph



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Current: Danbury, CT, United States
Welcome! A few years ago, I discovered an application that artists employ in their works to bring cultural awareness to their audiences. Having discerned this semiotic theory that applies to literature, music, art, film, and the media, I have devoted the blog, "Theory of Iconic Realism" to explore this theory. The link to the publisher of my book is below. If you or your university would like a copy of this book for your library or if you would like to review it for a scholarly journal, please contact the Edwin Mellen Press at the link listed below. Looking forward to hearing from you!

Thank you for visiting. I hope you will find the information insightful. ~ Dr. Jeanne Iris
To view my page on the Edwin Mellen Press website, please click below:


I have demonstrated or will demonstrate the application of this theory at the following locations:
November, 2016 @ Massachusetts Maritime Academy:
"A Terrible Beauty is Born"...The Semiotic Theory of Iconic Realism and William Butler Yeats' poem, Easter 1916
April, 2016 @ University of Notre Dame:
A 'Daughter of Attila' Speaks: The Semiotic Theory of Iconic Realism in the Cultural Identity of Irish Celts and Magyars
Dates pending: I will present the theory of iconic realism at universities and art institutes which have purchased my book.

05 July, 2018

"Don't Stop Believing" and Iconic Realism

Photo from Google Images

Any song that speaks of south Detroit draws my attention, and this classic song by Journey is no exception. The iconic images of the human struggle with emotions juxtaposed with light and enlightenment brings the audience of this song in tune with the perpetual dilemma of humanity's search for meaning. "It goes on and on and on and on."

Don't Stop Believing

by Journey

Just a small town girl, livin' in a lonely world
She took the midnight train goin' anywhere
Just a city boy, born and raised in south Detroit
He took the midnight train goin' anywhere

A singer in a smokey room
A smell of wine and cheap perfume
For a smile they can share the night
It goes on and on and on and on

Strangers waiting, up and down the boulevard
Their shadows searching in the night
Streetlights people, living just to find emotion
Hiding, somewhere in the night

Working hard to get my fill,
Everybody wants a thrill
Payin' anything to roll the dice,
just one more time
Some will win, some will lose
Some were born to sing the blues
Oh, the movie never ends
It goes on and on and on and on


Don't stop believin'
Hold on to the feelin'
Streetlight people

01 July, 2018

The History of The United States National Anthem

Click HERE to view the history of the National Anthem of the United States of America.

A Patriotic Wave

I photographed this little boy, waving to the soldier at a local 4th of July parade. It illustrates iconic realism beautifully, for here you'll see a U.S. Army Jeep, ready for war, yet riding through a typical parade route, filled with families, smiles, hopes, and dreams. This brings to the awareness of the audience that no matter how peaceful a society may seem to be, as long as there is hatred in this world, there will be a need to defend against it. 

A Wave
The jeep moves slowly through the parade route
and from the rear seat, a soldier sits, armed
with a rifle and a wave.

Along the side of the road, 
with his mother by his side, a boy stands, armed
with a camera and a wave.

Across the road, a family looks on;
the father hoists a toddler onto his shoulders
armed with a blue balloon and a wave.

The jeep, painted in desert camouflage, 
ready for war in a distant land,
now travels this country route, thousands of waves away,

past a hopeful mother, a father, a child.
The jeep's flag catches a benevolent wind in its fold,
and weaving peace through its threads, it waves.

© Jeanne I. Lakatos  

28 June, 2018

Sydney Owenson's "Lay of an Irish Harp" and Iconic Realism

Sydney Owenson (Lady Morgan) 
The cover photo of my book from New York Public Library

In her 1807 lyrical collection, Lay of an Irish Harp, Sydney Owenson uses the iconic imagery of a harp to scrutinize the resonating cry for enlightened human consciousness shortly after the Act of Union 1801 has been enforced. She illustrates the harmonics of human intellect surrounding the Irish message of perseverance in times of hardship and indignity suffered when human rights are ignored, using rhythmic structure within her poetics and iconic allusions through intricate semiotic fusion of philosophy and history. According to her memoirs, Owenson’s aspiration was as follows: make my native country better known, and to dissipate the political and religious prejudices that hindered its prosperity…Neither lovers, friends, nor flatterers, ever turned my attention from the steady, settled aim of my life-- and that was to advocate the interest of my country in my writings…        

When enlightenment merely reflects the ignorance of cultural bias, the abrasive consciousness of society suppresses creative exploration and moves into a mire of lost intentions and spiritual limitation. Owenson begins a personal quest to enlighten her contemporaries of a plausible if not impossible endeavour for the Irish and the British to maintain a semblance of harmony in Ireland. She uses the aural traditions of harp music and the power in lyrical structure to express innovative concepts through the traditional aural experiences of narratives and music.  Kate Bowan and Paul Pickering remark: 

Music is central to the formation of identities whether national, ethic, religious, or political as it can by virtue of being a social activity, include or exclude, and is open to countless reshaping and re-articulations in various contexts.

Thus, Owenson’s literary works demonstrate an iconic vision in the midst of dissonance, as she focuses her reading audience’s attention on discordant elements within nineteenth century Irish society that need transformation. (Excerpt from my paper, read at the Association for Franco-Irish Studies conference in Dublin, Ireland, 2012)

20 June, 2018

Margaret Mitchell's Scarlet O'Hara and Iconic Realism (Click here to view a clip from the film, Gone with the Wind.)

Photo from Google Images
"As God is my witness, they're not going to lick me. 
I'll never be hungry again, nor any of my folks..."

Margaret Mitchell's Pulitzer Prize winning novel, Gone with the Wind, beautifully illustrates the semiotic theory of iconic realism. She places a gentle young woman, raised on a southern plantation, in the midst of the American Civil War (or War of Northern Aggression, as they say south of the Mason-Dixon Line). Through this juxtaposition, Mitchell makes her audience aware of the need for perseverance to maintain one's dignity, personally and culturally.

In the scene above, Scarlet emerges from Tara, fatigued and tattered like a wilted magnolia blossom, but she slowly elevates herself as the horizon brightens. Her spirit breathes life back into this flower as a nation learns to cultivate the quality of innovation.

This novel was published in 1936, during the midst of the Great Depression when millions of Americans needed the kind of determination that the character, Scarlet O'Hara, exhibited. In addition, the interaction between the various characters throughout this novel illustrates a need for cultural reform on many levels.