Abraham Lincoln: The Flame of Place


Location: Snite Museum of Art, Annenberg Auditorium

Alexander Nemerov, chair of the Department of the History of Art, Yale University

Nemerov’s theme evolves from the subject of his most recent book, Acting in the Night: Macbeth and the Places of the Civil War. Published in 2010, it examines a single night’s performance of Macbeth attended by Abraham Lincoln in Washington in 1863. Nemerov’s lecture responds to the question: "What can the performance of a single play on one night tell us about the world this event inhabited so briefly?” In order to illuminate Lincoln’s rendezvous with Macbeth on this occasion, he considers paintings, prints, photographs, poetry, and memoirs clarifying the relationships between art, politics, and daily life.

Nemerov is widely recognized as one of the country’s leading scholars of 19th and 20th century American art. His numerous publications have been both eclectic and influential. He has written a book on film, Icons of Grief: Val Lewton’s Home Front Pictures (2005), and two books on painting, The Body of Raphaelle Peale: Still Life and Selfhood, 1812-1824 (2001) and Frederic Remington and Turn-of-the-Century America (1995). His exhibition To Make a World: George Ault and 1940s America opens at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in March 2011.

This event is co-sponsored by the Institute for Scholarship in Liberal Arts; the Department of Art, Art History and Design; the Department of American Studies; and Shakespeare at Notre Dame.

This ecture is free and open to the public.