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Race and Racism in Nineteenth-Century ArtThe Ascendency of Robert Duncanson, Edward Bannister, and Edmonia Lewis$
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Naurice Frank Woods Jr.

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781496834348

Published to University Press of Mississippi: January 2022

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496834348.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 25 June 2022

Mary Edmonia Lewis (ca. 1844–1907)

Mary Edmonia Lewis (ca. 1844–1907)

Chapter:
(p.125) Chapter Three Mary Edmonia Lewis (ca. 1844–1907)
Source:
Race and Racism in Nineteenth-Century Art
Author(s):

Naurice Frank Woods Jr.

George Dimock

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781496834348.003.0004

Afro-Indian sculptor, Edmonia Lewis, exhibited a startling marble sculpture entitled The Death of Cleopatra at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition of 1876 to considerable attention from art critics and the public. The fact that Lewis enjoyed so lofty a position among the art makers of the nineteenth century was remarkable given the prejudices experienced by members of her race and gender at that time. Indeed, her path to the Centennial was the most improbable of all the exhibiting artists and her rise to prominence as an internationally celebrated sculptor stands as one of the most unique and intriguing stories in the annals of American art. Thus, this chapter examines closely a true pioneering feminist of the nineteenth century who leveraged her biracial identity and gender to achieve global interest, success, and reward.

Keywords:   Edmonia Lewis, Biracial identity, Female nineteenth-century sculptors, Charlotte Cushman, Death of Cleopatra

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