Warnock Lecture Series: Dell Upton (UCLA): Block Museum - Northwestern University
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Warnock Lecture Series: Dell Upton (UCLA)

Photo Credit: Nathan Bedford Forrest (C. H. Niehaus, 1904, removed 2017), Memphis TN.
Photo Credit: Nathan Bedford Forrest (C. H. Niehaus, 1904, removed 2017), Memphis TN.
5 PM

Event Details

Date & Time:

Wed November 6, 2019
5 PM


The Block Museum of Art
40 Arts Circle Drive
Evanston, IL 60208


Open to the public


Northwestern University Department of Art History presents the Warnock Lecture Series.

"Putting Monuments in their Places"

Recent struggles to remove Confederate monuments from American civic space have focused appropriately on their origins in the particular history of this slavery-based, white-supremacist society. However, the treatment of statues as individual objects rooted in American history misses two important points. First, that monuments are part of mixed landscapes, where they reinforce planning decisions and where they are in “conversation” with other monuments. Second, Confederate monuments, as products of a neo-Confederate New South, exhibit patterns of representation and siting that closely resemble those of other failed, racially-based nationalisms of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, including Risorgimento and Fascist Italy and fascist Portugal. The talk will consider Confederate statues in juxtaposition to European monuments to develop insights into the distinctive situation of the American South.

Dell Upton is a historian of architecture, material culture, and cities. He focuses both on the United States and on the global scene and his books include Another City: Urban Life and Urban Spaces in the New American Republic (2008) and Architecture in the United States (1998), a volume in the Oxford History of Art series, as well as Holy Things and Profane: Anglican Parish Churches in Colonial Virginia (1986); and Madaline: Love and Survival in Antebellum New Orleans (1996). He has had a longstanding interest in African-American history, architecture and material culture, and early in his career in studied landscapes of slavery. In recent years, he has been more interested in the urban and rural landscapes of the post-emancipation period. What Can and Can’t Be Said, a study of civil-rights and African-American history monuments in the South, was recently published in 2015. He is also working on a revised and enlarged edition of Architecture in the United States.

Photo Credit: Nathan Bedford Forrest (C. H. Niehaus, 1904, removed 2017), Memphis TN.

Contact The Block Museum of Art for more information: (847) 491-4000 or email us at block-museum@northwestern.edu