By Eric Fitzsimmons and Sarah E. Elia
In 1945, Augusta Savage, a sculptor and a key figure in the Harlem Renaissance, traded the hustle of Harlem for a secluded house, 100 miles north, tucked at the end of a dirt drive in Saugerties, New York. For a long time, her story was said to end there in a retreat from society and the Harlem art world—a narrative that ignored her ongoing work and active social life in her adopted town.
By Justene G. Hill
Over the past few years, several movies and television shows have delved into the history of slavery in the United States. From the dramatic (12 Years a Slave and Django Unchained) to the comedic (Key & Peele), slavery has been re-introduced as a theme in American popular culture. In January 2015, NBC announced that it would air an eight-hour miniseries called Freedom Run, based on Betty DeRamus’ 2005 book Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories from the Underground Railroad.
In the October 2015 issue of Perspectives on History, I wrote on historically informed performance of medieval, Renaissance, and baroque music. Musicians at the Folger and Newberry Consorts spoke to me about how history informed their music, and in turn how music could help transport listeners to a different time.
At the National Council on Public History annual meeting in Baltimore last month, I once again found myself at the intersection of music and history at a workshop called “Banjos in the Museum: Music as Public History.” Organized by the Stevenson University public history program, this workshop featured archivist and musicologist Greg Adams and instrumentalists Ken and Brad Kolodner.
The premise of Hamilton: An American Musical sounds a bit like a desperate high school history teacher’s last-ditch effort to engage apathetic teens: a hip-hop musical telling the story of Alexander Hamilton, one of the less iconic founding fathers.
As Shatha Almutawa reports in the September issue of Perspectives on History, a humble French farmer’s 1830s discovery of a trove of Roman silver artifacts has been carefully restored by conservators at the Getty Villa. Here, art conservator Susan Lansing Maish takes us behind the scenes of efforts to restore and interpret this priceless treasure.
A 16th-century Mughal miniature will likely be sold for 8,000–10,000 British pounds at Christie’s Islamic art auction on October 8. In a phone interview, Andrew Butler-Wheelhouse, specialist in Islamic and Indian art at Christie’s King Street, described this unique miniature
Since the publication in early July of Go Set a Watchman (you can read the first chapter here), many of Harper Lee’s reviewers (negative and positive alike) have focused on the character Atticus Finch.
Throughout Christian history, the Virgin Mary has been depicted as a young mother nurturing her child, and as an older mother mourning her son. Both depictions of Mary have been made to revere her in different parts of the world,