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The perception of men's intimacy in the fin de siècle : a consideration via Delville's The School of Plato

(2020) ART HISTORY. 43(1). p.154-175
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Abstract
Jean Delville's The School of Plato (1898) is remarkable not only as a statement piece of fin-de-siecle occulture, but also for its bold portrayal of Plato's pupils as a group of ephebes in intimate association. The canvas and its reception history lend themselves uniquely to a consideration of the complexities of an art-historiographical engagement with representations of male love, yet the majority of scholars have tended to subsume the work's 'homoeroticism' under Delville's occult preoccupations. In this essay, I attempt to unpack the male intimacy pictured by aligning art-historical analysis with queer theory and gay and lesbian history, seeking to suggest ways in which the painting may have straddled the line between normativity and deviance. I argue that its affinity with newly compact categories of subversive sexuality - then to an unprecedented extent in the public eye in Belgium - may help account for the government's stubborn refusal to purchase the work.

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MLA
Dekeukeleire, Thijs. “The Perception of Men’s Intimacy in the Fin de Siècle : A Consideration via Delville’s The School of Plato.” ART HISTORY, vol. 43, no. 1, 2020, pp. 154–75, doi:10.1111/1467-8365.12471.
APA
Dekeukeleire, T. (2020). The perception of men’s intimacy in the fin de siècle : a consideration via Delville’s The School of Plato. ART HISTORY, 43(1), 154–175. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8365.12471
Chicago author-date
Dekeukeleire, Thijs. 2020. “The Perception of Men’s Intimacy in the Fin de Siècle : A Consideration via Delville’s The School of Plato.” ART HISTORY 43 (1): 154–75. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8365.12471.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Dekeukeleire, Thijs. 2020. “The Perception of Men’s Intimacy in the Fin de Siècle : A Consideration via Delville’s The School of Plato.” ART HISTORY 43 (1): 154–175. doi:10.1111/1467-8365.12471.
Vancouver
1.
Dekeukeleire T. The perception of men’s intimacy in the fin de siècle : a consideration via Delville’s The School of Plato. ART HISTORY. 2020;43(1):154–75.
IEEE
[1]
T. Dekeukeleire, “The perception of men’s intimacy in the fin de siècle : a consideration via Delville’s The School of Plato,” ART HISTORY, vol. 43, no. 1, pp. 154–175, 2020.
@article{8640134,
  abstract     = {Jean Delville's The School of Plato (1898) is remarkable not only as a statement piece of fin-de-siecle occulture, but also for its bold portrayal of Plato's pupils as a group of ephebes in intimate association. The canvas and its reception history lend themselves uniquely to a consideration of the complexities of an art-historiographical engagement with representations of male love, yet the majority of scholars have tended to subsume the work's 'homoeroticism' under Delville's occult preoccupations. In this essay, I attempt to unpack the male intimacy pictured by aligning art-historical analysis with queer theory and gay and lesbian history, seeking to suggest ways in which the painting may have straddled the line between normativity and deviance. I argue that its affinity with newly compact categories of subversive sexuality - then to an unprecedented extent in the public eye in Belgium - may help account for the government's stubborn refusal to purchase the work.},
  author       = {Dekeukeleire, Thijs},
  issn         = {0141-6790},
  journal      = {ART HISTORY},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {154--175},
  title        = {The perception of men's intimacy in the fin de siècle : a consideration via Delville's The School of Plato},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1467-8365.12471},
  volume       = {43},
  year         = {2020},
}

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