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48 Baxter Street, Athens, GA 30602
"Race, Racism, and Representation in Roman Art: Aethiopians in the Visual Arts of the Roman World," Sinclair Bell, Northern Illinois University.
The visual and material culture of the Roman Empire provides an abundant record of encounters with or simply imaginings of foreign peoples. These images render visible complex formulations of ethnicity, social hierarchies, and power.
This lecture surveys the ways in which imperial artists represented the peoples whom the Romans referred to as Aethiopians or Nubians (i.e., “Black” Africans) in a variety of visual media. The lecture also considers how and why these works have been (mis)interpreted or sometimes altogether ignored by ancient art historians, and proposes new ways of integrating them into future, critical histories of Roman art.
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