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The Postcard’s Radical Openness: A Philosophical Perspective of its Inception, Impact, and Traits

Title: The Postcard’s Radical Openness
Subtitle: A Philosophical Perspective of its Inception, Impact, and Traits
Subject Classification: Society and Culture, History, Arts 
BIC Classification: AB, JF, HB
BISAC Classification: SOC022000, ART016010, PHI013000
Binding: Hardback, ebook, pp.307
Publication date: 7th April 2024
ISBN (Hardback): 978-1-80441-515-3
ISBN (ebook): 978-1-80441-516-0


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The Postcard’s Radical Openness offers a groundbreaking exploration of what this multifaceted, double-sided open card entails and how it has affected our being in the world. With a holistic approach, it focuses on studying the postcard’s specific way of being and performing, a particular ontology that opens up what is constitutively implicated in such an apparently trivial artifact.

The book, organized into four parts, meticulously unveils the postcard’s political, technological, aesthetic, and ethical dimensions, ending with a coda correlating the postcard’s radical openness to G. Klimt’s painting, Nuda Veritas (1899) in reference to the scope of truth. By examining the postcard’s complex worldwide history, its socio-cultural significance, and its global effect, the book reveals hidden stories shedding light on its impact on photography, printing, marketing, trade, and business practices and exposes the aesthetic, communicative, and ethical qualities that lie behind the enormous success of postcards at the turn of the 20th century.

This comprehensive study is positioned as a thought-provoking invitation to scholars and students interested in material culture, media studies, and human interactions, as well as to history enthusiasts, art lovers, and postcard collectors. Offering a distinctive contribution, the book not only fills a void in the literature but also encourages readers to question and reflect on the transformative power inherent in the postcard's 'radical openness,' presenting a novel and unparalleled analysis of this seemingly trivial yet culturally significant object.


Author: Dr. Mariluz Restrepo is Professor Emerita, Universidad Nacional de Colombia (Bogotá). Well-known for her research, lectures, and publications referring to theories of representation, interpretation, and communication; aesthetic and rhetorical views; teaching practices, and contemporary cultures, she is the author of over 100 articles and various books in English and Spanish.


This title is currently being reviewed. Please check back for further updates in due course. 

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