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3.94  ·  Rating details ·  116 Ratings  ·  3 Reviews
Setting Realism in its social and historical context, this title discusses the crucial paradox posed by Realist works of art - notably in the revolutionary paintings of Courbet, the works of Manet, Degas and Monet, of the Pre-Raphaelites and other English, American, German and Italian Realists.
Paperback, 288 pages
Published March 30th 1972 by Penguin Books (first published March 30th 1971)
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Apr 22, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: art, modernism
A fine contribution to an excellent series, Penguin’s Stle and Civilization, Nochlin’s writing is often pretentious and way over-cooked, but also contains brilliant nuggets scattered throughout. A bit frustrating, actually.
Caterina Pierre
Jan 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
Excellent of course. The one-star deduction is for the very dry Epilogue that was published without images. No real footnotes; must have been a publisher's decision years ago that would not fly today in a scholarly book. However if you want to write about the style it's a must-read, and it hasn't really been replaced or surpassed.
Joseph Adelizzi, Jr.
Linda Nochlin is intelligent. She probably knows more about Art than 99.9999999% of those on the planet, and she certainly knows more about Art than I ever will. She shared so many insights, brought out so many facets of the many works she described in her book Realism that I was amazed and bored. My bad, I admit, but for me Art is feeling and I found her descriptions and interpretations so scholarly, so cold, and so limp as to be devoid of feeling.

I know they say “a picture is worth a thousand
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Linda Nochlin was an American art historian, university professor and writer. A prominent feminist art historian, she was best known as a proponent of the question "Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?", in an essay of the same name published in 1971.

Her critical attention has been drawn to investigating the ways in which gender affects the creation and apprehension of art, as evidenced by
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“Degas, more than any other Realist, looked upon the photograph not merely as a means of documentation, but rather as an inspiration: it evoked the spirit of his own imagery of the spontaneous, the fragmentary and the immediate. Thus, in a certain sense, critics of Realism were quite correct to equate the objective, detached, scientific mode of photography, and its emphasis on the descriptive rather than the imaginative or evaluative, with the basic qualities of Realism itself. As Paul Valéry pointed out in an important though little known article: ‘the moment that photography appeared, the descriptive genre began to invade Letters. In verse as in prose, the décor and the exterior aspects of life took an almost excessive place.… With photography… realism pronounces itself in our Literature’ and, he might have said, in our art as well.” 2 likes
“The artist striving for truth or sincerity had to guard his spontaneous vision against distortion or alteration by aesthetic conventions or preconceptions.” 0 likes
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