“The God Behind the Marble: Loot and Liberation in Nineteenth Century Prussia” - Alice Goff, University of Chicago

Monday, February 5, 2024 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm
HQ 107
Humanities Quadrangle, 320 York Street, HQ 107

At the turn of the nineteenth century, German intellectuals facing revolution in France and war across Europe found solace in the idea that art could liberate society. They struggled, however, to transform this idea into a reality as all around them European collections were falling prey to the very violence they were theoretically supposed to transcend. Drawing on her newly released book, The God Behind the Marble: The Fate of Art in the German Aesthetic State (University of Chicago Press, 2024), Goff tells of the looting of European art in the Napoleonic period, and of its consequences for the enduring faith in art’s liberatory powers of art in German cultural politics through the modern period.


This event is presented by Yale Department of History and is co-sponsored by Yale Department of the History of Art and Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures.