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Mary Edmonia Lewis: Art, Gender, and Ethnicity - Thesis Proposal Example

For Lewis, her works of art not only gave a new dimension into the field of sculpture, but the success she achieved also demonstrates that she is a woman who struggled against the biases of the society during her time, and succeeded against them (Appiah & Gates, 2005, p.1154). To gain further understanding of Lewis’ works, below is a brief analysis of the ideas she communicated through her sculptures. Some of her works were drawn from her personal heritage and experiences. Lewis initially sculpted clay medallions of white anti-slavery leaders. The finished works were well received (Harris, 2000, p.14). There is also a sculpture of a Native-American couple on their wedding called “The Marriage of Hiawatha.” Another sculpture is that of Longfellow called “Bust of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.” Lewis chose Longfellow because of his poem “Song of Hiawatha” which served as an inspiration to Lewis. Also, one of her most famous works is a sculpture done in 1867 called “The Old Indian Arrow Maker and his Daughter.” Aside from these mentioned, there are other works that obviously spoke of Lewis’ life , beliefs, and her love for her heritage. Some other samples are the “"Bust of Minnehaha” that seems to express dignity despite the inevitable fate (Holland, 2000, p.47), the “Hagar” that serves as a symbol for all the women who experienced struggle and suffering, and the “Forever Free” that depicts an African-American freed slave and his child. Her works are now considered treasures, showing how she

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It is well known that several courageous women paved their way into history by standing up for beliefs that were considered unacceptable during their times. This purpose of this research is to provide a discourse on the impact of Lewis’ works on her image in the art and social worlds.
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d and mortified those who claimed that Negroes lacked the capacity for intelligence and fine art, particularly because Edmonia insisted on standing next to her works in photographs and extensively explaining them (Holland, 2000, p.48). A. From 1866 to 1867, Edmonia created
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won freedom by her artistry (Peck, 2007, p.13).
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The research aims to study Mary Edmonia Lewis’ works and impact on the development of western civilization…
Mary Edmonia Lewis: Art, Gender, and Ethnicity
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