New Book | Staging Blackness and Performing Whiteness

Posted in books by Editor on January 30, 2017

From Routledge:

Wendy Sutherland, Staging Blackness and Performing Whiteness in Eighteenth-Century German Drama (New York: Routledge, 2016), 272 pages, ISBN: 978  14094  24024, $150.

9781409424024Focusing on eighteenth-century cultural productions, Wendy Sutherland examines how representations of race in philosophy, anthropology, aesthetics, drama, and court painting influenced the construction of a white bourgeois German self. Sutherland positions her work within the framework of the transatlantic slave trade, showing that slavery, colonialism, and the triangular trade between Europe, West Africa, and the Caribbean function as the global stage on which German bourgeois dramas by Friedrich Wilhelm Ziegler, Ernst Lorenz Rathlef, and Theodor Körner (and a novella by Heinrich von Kleist on which Körner’s play was based) were performed against a backdrop of philosophical and anthropological influences. Plays had an important role in educating the rising bourgeois class in morality, Sutherland argues, with fathers and daughters offered as exemplary moral figures in contrast to the depraved aristocracy. At the same time, black female protagonists in nontraditional dramas represent the boundaries of physical beauty and marriage eligibility while also complicating ideas of moral beauty embodied in the concept of the beautiful soul. Her book offers convincing evidence that the eighteenth-century German stage grappled with the representation of blackness during the Age of Goethe, even though the German states were neither colonial powers nor direct participants in the slave trade.

Wendy Sutherland is Associate Professor of German at New College of Florida.


Race in Eighteenth-Century Germany
Slavery, Colonialism, and the Eighteenth-Century Global Stage
‘Looking at the Overlooked’: Stage Properties and the Table in Karl Lessing’s Die Mätresse (1780)
Excursus: The Court Moor and Eighteenth-Century Court Painting
The Construction of Whiteness in the Traditional German Bourgeois Drama
Race, Doubles, and Foils: Staging Blackness in Friedrich Wilhelm Ziegler’s Die Mohrinn (1801)
Race, Homosocial Desire, and the Black in Ernst Lorenz Rathlef’s Die Mohrinn zu Hamburg (1775)
Reading in the Dark? Racial Hierarchy and Miscegenation in Heinrich von Kleist’s Die Verlobung in St. Domingo (1811) and Theodor Körner’s Toni (1812)





Call for Papers | Full Circle: The Medal in Art History

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on January 30, 2017

From H-ArtHist:

Full Circle: The Medal in Art History
The Frick Collection, New York, 8–9 September 2017

Proposals due by 1 March 2017

An invention of the Italian Renaissance inspired by ancient coins, medals were first created to commemorate individuals and significant events. Over time and as the art form flourished across Europe, they came to be made and to function in new ways, including to celebrate the éclat of the ruling class (and ascendance of the bourgeoisie), document achievements in the arts and sciences, and serve as a resource for the study of the distant past. The study of medals—too often overlooked in narratives of western art history—illuminates the aesthetic landscape of the five centuries in which they enjoyed wide popularity and provides vital insights into the social and political history of Europe. Medalists were celebrated members of the arts community, and medal making was not an isolated practice. Artists from Pisanello to Dürer to David d’Angers designed and/or produced medals alongside their paintings, prints, and sculptures. The medal has long been held to bridge these disciplines, and recent scholarship has begun to probe the rich intersections between medals and other arts.

On the occasion of the exhibition The Pursuit of Immortality: Masterpieces from the Scher Collection of Portrait Medals—which celebrates an initial gift to The Frick from the unparalleled collection of Stephen K. and Janie Woo Scher—and in honor of Stephen Scher’s contributions to the study of medals as a collector, curator, and scholar, The Frick Collection is organizing Full Circle: The Medal in Art History. This symposium builds upon the work of Scher and others who have sought to re-center the medal in art-historical discourse and to bring this important class of object to the attention of the broader scholarly community and the public.

We invite proposals for 20-minute papers focusing on any aspect of the production, collection, and interpretation of commemorative medals made from the fifteenth to the nineteenth century that situate them in relation to a broader artistic and cultural context. We strongly encourage submissions by emerging scholars to promote future research in this field. Please send an abstract (max. 250 words) and CV by Wednesday, 1 March 2017, to the conveners:
• Aimee Ng, Associate Curator, The Frick Collection, ang@frick.org
• Robert Wellington, Lecturer, Centre for Art History and Art Theory, Australian National University, robert.wellington@anu.edu.au
• Melanie Vandenbrouck, Curator of Art, Royal Museums Greenwich, MVandenbrouck@rmg.co.uk
Please include ‘The Medal in Art History: Proposal’ in the subject line.

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