Art in an Age of Civil Struggle, 1848-1871
Tracing the various movements of realism through the major metropolitan centers of Europe and America, Boime strikingly evokes the milieus that shaped the lives and works of Gustave Courbet, Edouard Manet, Émile Zola, Honoré Daumier, Walt Whitman, Abraham Lincoln, and the earliest photographers, among countless others. In doing so, he spearheads a powerful new way of reassessing how art emerges from the welter of cultural and political events and the artist’s struggle to interpret his surroundings. Boime supports this multifaceted approach with a wealth of illustrations and written sources that demonstrate the intimate links between visual culture and social change. Culminating at the transition to impressionism, Art in an Age of Civil Struggle makes historical sense of a movement that paved the way for avant-garde aesthetics and, more broadly, of how a particular style emerges at a particular moment.
“A powerful and original successor to the previous volumes in a series that has become indispensable to all those of us who teach or study nineteenth-century art.”
“True to form in his extraordinary series on the social history of modern art, Art in an Age of Civil Struggle extends into the late nineteenth century Albert Boime’s commanding perspective on the dynamics of cultural development within the nascent industrial and capitalist democratic societies of Europe and the United States. Boime’s now-indispensable erudition and scholarship are always accessible and enjoyable, fostering a sense of the reader’s participation in this art historical journey toward explanations of a social and cultural order increasingly familiar to us now in ours. His brilliant achievement as a teacher and writer is to show how, in the end, this history has led to where we are now.”