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The Black Civil War Soldier: A Visual History of Conflict and Citizenship A book talk with Sarah Lewis, Matthew Fox-Amato and Deborah Willis
Tuesday, February 16
2:00 – 3: 15 PM (EST)
The Black Civil War Soldier: A Visual History of Conflict and Citizenship
A book talk with Sarah Lewis, Matthew Fox-Amato and Deborah Willis
Representing the 19th Century in Images
Book Talk: The Black Civil War Soldier: A Visual History of Conflict and Citizenship by Deborah Willis and a discussion with contributors Sarah Lewis and Matthew Fox-Amato of To Make Their Own Way In the World: The Enduring Legacy of the Zealy Daguerreotypes. They will discuss their chapters "The Insistent Reveal" and "Portraits of Endurance and Vernacular Photography in the Antebellum South."

A stunning collection of stoic portraits and intimate ephemera from the lives of Black Civil War soldiers

Though both the Union and Confederate armies excluded African American men from their initial calls to arms, many of the men who eventually served were black. Simultaneously, photography culture blossomed—marking the Civil War as the first conflict to be extensively documented through photographs. In The Black Civil War Soldier, Deb Willis explores the crucial role of photography in (re)telling and shaping African American narratives of the Civil War, pulling from a dynamic visual archive that has largely gone unacknowledged.

With over seventy images, The Black Civil War Soldier contains a huge breadth of primary and archival materials, many of which are rarely reproduced. The photographs are supplemented with handwritten captions, letters, and other personal materials; Willis not only dives into the lives of black Union soldiers, but also includes stories of other African Americans involved with the struggle—from left-behind family members to female spies.

Code WILLIS30-FM will allow for 30 percent off and free domestic shipping at nyupress.org

Presented by the Center for Black Visual Culture (CBVC)/Institute of African American Affairs (IAAA); Co-sponsored by 370J Project

Feb 16, 2021 02:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Matthew Fox-Amato
Matthew Fox-Amato is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Idaho, where he teaches courses on nineteenth-century America, race and ethnicity, and visual and material culture. He published Exposing Slavery: Photography, Human Bondage, and the Birth of Modern Visual Politics in America with Oxford University Press in 2019. The book was a finalist for the Gilder Lehrman Lincoln Prize as well as the Association of American Publishers PROSE Award.Fox-Amato received his B.A. from Harvard University and his Ph.D. in History, with a certificate in Visual Studies, at the University of Southern California, after which he held a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship at Washington University in St. Louis. @fox_amato
Sarah Elizabeth Lewis
Sarah Elizabeth Lewis is an associate professor at Harvard University in the Department of History of Art and Architecture and the Department of African and African American Studies. She is the founder of the Vision and Justice Project. Lewis has published essays on race, contemporary art, and culture, with forthcoming publications including a book on race, whiteness, and photography (Harvard University Press, 2022), Vision and Justice (Random House), an anthology on the work of Carrie Mae Weems (MIT Press, 2021). In 2019, she became the inaugural recipient of the Freedom Scholar Award, presented by The Association for the Study of African American Life and History to honor Lewis for her body of work and its “direct positive impact on the life of African-Americans.” Twitter: @sarahelizalewis Instagram: @sarahelizabethlewis1
Deborah Willis
Deborah Willis is University Professor and Chair of the Department of Photography & Imaging at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and has an affiliated appointment with the College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Social & Cultural Analysis, and Africana Studies. Willis is the author of Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present; Reflections in Black: A History of Black Photographers - 1840 to the Present; Let Your Motto be Resistance – African American Portraits; Envisioning Emancipation: Black Americans and the End of Slavery with Barbara Krauthamer; and Michelle Obama: The First Lady in Photographs. Both Envisioning Emancipation and Michelle Obama received NAACP Image Awards. @debwillisphoto