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Exhibition August 10, 2019 − January 5, 2020
Shadows of subalternity
Originally used in the military context in the 18th and 19th centuries to refer to a junior officer, the word "subaltern" (subordinate) evolved over time. The Italian Marxist thinker Antonio Gramsci (1891–1937) used this term to describe lower class people, such as peasants and workers, who lack access to hegemonic forces. It has also been widely used in the theories of Marxism, feminism, nationalism and postcolonialism, in order to speak of subordination in the social, political and economic hierarchies.

In the 1970s, secondary studies emerged as a discipline in India with the aim of revising Indian national and postcolonial historiography from the point of view of the “lower stratum of society”. The focus was on the role of the peasant consciousness; its relationship with material conditions and various resistance modes. Currently, secondary research is a global phenomenon known for its defense of the lower people as a whole, regardless of their affiliation to the history of colonialism.

This Exhibition, created from the permanent collection of the University of Arizona Museum of Art, examines various forms of subordination among classes, races and genders from different time periods and places. Fifteen European and American works of art, spanning two centuries, shed light on the subtleties of lawlessness and subordination, which are often overlooked. In the 21st century, it became generally known that no form of subordination could be understood in isolation. We must develop a mutual understanding between categories such as gender, class and race. Thus, this exhibition also aims to find a thread of intersection between the various shades of stealth, depicted in works of art.