Picturing "The Great War" | Newberry

Picturing "The Great War"

"The Red Cross." Life, vol. 70. 1917. A 5 .15

“The Red Cross.” Life, vol. 70. 1917. A 5 .15

Conflict, Representation, and Memory in American Visual Culture
Thursday, October 2, 2014Saturday, October 4, 2014

9 am to 3 pm daily

Dr. Patricia Scanlan, Independent Scholar
Chicago Teachers as Scholars

Writing on the eve of “The Great War,” Chicago lawyer, author, and art collector Arthur Jerome Eddy declared: “The world is filled with ferment.” Although the thrust of Eddy’s essay was a critical discussion of innovations in modern art, he equally acknowledged the “ferment of new ideas” in politics, social reform, science, business, and poetry. Eddy’s words foreshadowed the period of unprecedented upheaval and collective trauma of World War I that dramatically altered American politics, culture, and society. In this seminar we will examine the crucial role that images played in shaping American perceptions of and involvement in the war, using a diverse selection of primary source materials to understand how the visual culture of the Great War affected conceptions about patriotism, battle, gender, the body, and collective memory in the United States. Further, we will explore the war’s profound impact on journalistic and artistic practices through careful readings of objects and primary source documents. The items, which include propaganda posters, illustrated newspapers and periodicals, letters, prints, sheet music, photographs, and paintings, reveal shifting representations of death, destruction, patriotism, and modern industrial life. This three-day seminar will culminate in a collaborative digital lesson planning workshop.

Support for this Teachers as Scholars seminar is provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.

Cost and Registration Information 

Complete substitute teacher coverage will be provided for seminar participants. Registration is free and open to all Chicago Public Schools teachers starting September 4, 2014.


For more information, please email teacherprograms@newberry.org.