Marc Chagall's White Crucifixion: An Enduring Work of Political Art
AbstractThe works of Marc Chagall, a prominent and prolific Jewish artist, are among the most significant and recognizable creations to have emerged during the 20th century. The White Crucifixion was Chagall’s passionate response to the escalating atrocities by the National Socialist German Workers’ (Nazi) Party that resulted in Kristallnacht. This paper examines the early life of the artist in Czarist Russia amidst historical persecution and anti-Semitism, as well as the social and political milieu in which the White Crucifixion was created. The painting’s unique combination of Christian and Jewish imagery, with an illuminated and crucified “Jewish Jesus” at the focal point, and surrounded by scenes depicting Jewish suffering at the hands of the Nazis is explored in detail. The paper demonstrates that the distinctive religious and cultural experiences of Marc Chagall provided the palate from which the plight of the Jews was immortalized on canvas and which expressed his outrage. Condemning the world for their silence and imploring them to act in the face of inhumanity, the White Crucifixion remains an enduring work of political art whose message is as applicable today as it was in 1938.
How to Cite
KRAVITZ, Ariel M. Marc Chagall's White Crucifixion: An Enduring Work of Political Art. Vanderbilt Undergraduate Research Journal, [S.l.], v. 5, july 2009. ISSN 1555-788X. Available at: <http://ejournals.library.vanderbilt.edu/index.php/vurj/article/view/2820>. Date accessed: 18 july 2018. doi: https://doi.org/10.15695/vurj.v5i0.2820.
Humanities and Social Sciences
Copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the authors, with first publication rights granted to Vanderbilt Undergraduate Research Journal. By virtue of their appearance in this open access journal, articles are available for wide dissemination at no cost to readers, with proper attribution, in educational and other non-commercial settings. For undergraduates jointly authoring a manuscript with a faculty member, we strongly encourage the student to discuss with the faculty mentor and the Editor if the copyright policy will constrain future publication efforts in professional journals.