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A 'living art': Working-class, transcultural, and feminist aesthetics in the United States, Mexico, and Algeria, 1930s

Tabitha A Morgan, University of Massachusetts Amherst


The cultural productions of Katherine Anne Porter, Anita Brenner, Tina Modotti, Maria Izquierdo, and Juanita Guccione represent a distinctive interweaving of gender and class consciousness, national identification and political resistance, as represented in their artistic work. These five women became transnational carriers of a radical realist and modernist thought, culture, and ideology that became transported through their art when their gendered and classed bodies were left otherwise silenced and boundaried. These women, their cultural productions, and the ways in which their art generates a counter discourse to the dominant and institutionalized conceptions of transculturalism, aesthetics, and re-production, are vital to understanding the co-construction of nationhood as well as the self-determined creation of the individual self. From this overarching framework, I will explore how these women negotiated political conceptions of nationhood, artistic genres such as realism and modernism, and then created their own feminist, transcultural and working-class aesthetics to counter otherwise limited conceptions of individual agency. ^

Subject Area

American studies|Art history|Women's studies|Latin American studies|North African studies|Aesthetics|Social structure

Recommended Citation

Morgan, Tabitha A, "A 'living art': Working-class, transcultural, and feminist aesthetics in the United States, Mexico, and Algeria, 1930s" (2012). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI3518264.