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Warning against empowered women in France: Eugène Delacroix’s Medea about to kill Her children

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dc.contributor.author Smith, Shamra
dc.date.accessioned 2019-09-05T11:08:19Z
dc.date.available 2019-09-05T11:08:19Z
dc.date.issued 2012-04
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10344/8030
dc.description peer-reviewed en_US
dc.description.abstract Nineteenth-century France was a time of increasing freedom for women, though men sought to discourage this autonomy through criticism in the form of art. Caricatures depicted women abandoning their household duties and families. These depictions were a persuasive means of discouraging women who were intent on gaining more education and social rights and warned of the dangers of independence. Eugene Delacroix’s Medea About to Kill Her Children (1838) can be seen as such a warning. The painting represents the ultimate act of evil a woman can commit- the murder of her children and communicates the consequences of women’s freedom from martial obligation. Medea’s abandonment of basic motherly instincts is reflected in the predicament of the nineteenth-century woman, who left her children to play a more active role in society. Medea is reminiscent of Renaissance illustrations of the Holy Family, and contrasts Mary’s submission to the patriarchal authority of God with Medea’s defiance of her husband. This article will discuss Delacroix’s Medea About to Kill Her Children, and take a feminist approach to critically examine the painting and its context. Very little scholarship has been done in regards to Medea About to Kill Her Children, and by reading the painting in a feminist light, it can be better understood how art was employed to discourage women’s rights and suppress their demands for social autonomy in nineteenth-century Paris. en_US
dc.language eng
dc.language.iso eng en_US
dc.publisher Department of Sociology, University of Limerick en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Socheolas;4(1), pp.71-80
dc.subject Sociology en_US
dc.subject freedom en_US
dc.subject women en_US
dc.title Warning against empowered women in France: Eugène Delacroix’s Medea about to kill Her children en_US
dc.type info:eu-repo/semantics/article en_US
dc.type.supercollection all_ul_research en_US
dc.type.supercollection ul_published_reviewed en_US
dc.rights.accessrights info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess en_US


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