Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby on Creole: Portraits of France’s Foreign Relations During the Long Nineteenth Century
To mark the opening of Alexandre Dumas’s Afro: Blackness Caricatured, Erased, and Back Again, which she guest curated together with Vanessa Jackson, Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby introduces her new book, Creole, with a presentation designed to frame and contextualize the exhibition. The book addresses the unique and profound indeterminacy of the term Creole, a label applied to white, Black, and mixed-race people born in French colonies during the nineteenth century. Creole features a chapter in which representations of Alexandre Dumas père, whose grandmother was a Black Haitian slave, are addressed.
Darcy Grimaldo Grigsby is the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Distinguished Professor in the Arts and Humanities at UC Berkeley and the winner of the Clark Prize for Excellence in Arts Writing. She specializes in eighteenth- through twentieth-century French and American art and material culture, especially in relation to the politics of race, slavery, and colonialism. She is the author of Extremities: Painting Empire in Post-Revolutionary France; Colossal: Engineering the Suez Canal, Statue of Liberty, Eiffel Tower, and Panama Canal; and Enduring Truths: Sojourner’s Shadows and Substance.