1st Edition

Disability and Art History from Antiquity to the Twenty-First Century

Edited By Ann Millett-Gallant, Elizabeth Howie Copyright 2022
    300 Pages 5 Color & 76 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    300 Pages 5 Color & 76 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    300 Pages 5 Color & 76 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This volume analyzes representations of disability in art from antiquity to the twenty-first century, incorporating disability studies scholarship and art historical research and methodology.

    This book brings these two strands together to provide a comprehensive overview of the intersections between these two disciplines. Divided into four parts:

    • Ancient History through the 17th Century: Gods, Dwarfs, and Warriors
    • 17th-Century Spain to the American Civil War: Misfits, Wounded Bodies, and Medical Specimens
    • Modernism, Metaphor and Corporeality
    • Contemporary Art: Crips, Care, and Portraiture

    and comprised of 16 chapters focusing on Greek sculpture, ancient Chinese art, Early Italian Renaissance art, the Spanish Golden Age, nineteenth century art in France (Manet, Toulouse-Lautrec) and the US, and contemporary works, it contextualizes understandings of disability historically, as well as in terms of medicine, literature, and visual culture.

    This book is required reading for scholars and students of disability studies, art history, sociology, medical humanities and media arts.


    Part 1: Ancient History through the Seventeenth Century: Gods, Dwarfs, and Warriors

    1. Hephaestus Represented: a Mêtis-based Inquiry

    Sara Newman

    2. The Role of Dwarfs in Tang Postmortem Elite Life

    Leslie V. Wallace

    3. Disability and Poverty at the Brancacci Chapel

    Stephanie R. Miller

    4. Disability at the Edge of War: Gendered Violence in the Graphic Practice of Urs Graf

    Jess Bailey

    Part 2: Seventeenth-Century Spain to the American Civil War: Misfits, Wounded Bodies, and Medical Specimens

    5. Destierro and Desengaño: The Disabled Body in Golden Age Spanish Portraiture

    Colin Sanborn

    6. An Inartistic Interest: Civil War Medicine, Disability, and the Art of Thomas Eakins

    Jessica A. Cooley

    7. Empty Sleeves and Bloody Shirts: Disabled American Civil War Veterans and Presidential Campaigns, 1864–1880

    Erin R. Corrales-Diaz

    Part 3: Modernism, Metaphor, and Corporeality

    8. Deaf Gain: Toulouse-Lautrec’s Early Training with René Princeteau

    Alexandra Courtois de Vicose

    9. Manet’s Syphilis: Masculinity, Debility, and Adaptation in the 1880s

    Allison Leigh

    10. Facially Disfigured Veterans of World War I in Present-day Art: An Art Historical Analysis Against the Background of Medical History

    Anne Marno

    11. Disability Metaphor and American Individualism: Beyond the Glass Menagerie

    Timothy W. Hiles

    12. "Building the World of Tomorrow": Disability, Eugenics, and Sculpture at the 1939 New York World’s Fair

    Keri Watson

    13. Aesthetics of Disability and the Hybrid Body in Louise Bourgeois’s Femme Maison

    Lynn M. Somers

    Part 4: Contemporary Art: Crips, Care, and Portraiture

    14. Listening to the Queer-crip Body of Derek Jarman’s Blue

    Yetta Howard

    15. Collaborative Portraiture: A Feminist Disability Studies Approach to the Work of Riva Lehrer and Tanya Raabe-Webber

    Lucienne Auz

    16. On Carolyn Lazard’s Support System (for Tina, Park, and Bob): An Account

    Julia Pelta Feldman


    Ann Millett-Gallant received her PhD in art history in 2005 and serves as Senior Lecturer for the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA. She designs and teaches interdisciplinary online art history, visual culture, and women’s and disability studies courses. Her research bridges the disciplines of art history and disability studies. She is coeditor, with Elizabeth Howie, of Disability and Art History (Routledge, 2016). She has also published essays and reviews of art and film, and she enjoys painting and composing mixed-media collages.

    Elizabeth Howie is Professor of art history at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina, USA. She specializes in modern and contemporary art with an emphasis on history and theory of photography. She received her PhD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007. Publications include "The Dandy Victorian: Yinka Shonibare’s Allegory of Disability and Passing," in Disability and Art History (Routledge, 2016) coedited with Ann Millett-Gallant.