Perspectives on Degas Cover

Perspectives on Degas, (ed.) Kathryn Brown (Routledge, 2016). ISBN-13: 978-1472439970

The first comprehensive assessment of Degas’s legacy to be published in over two decades, this multi-author volume unites a team of international scholars to analyze Degas’s work, artistic practice, and unique methods of pictorial problem-solving. Established scholars and curators examine Degas’s paintings, prints, sculptures, and drawings and show how recent trends in art historical thinking can prompt viewers to re-evaluate their engagement with Degas and re-conceive of his place in the art historical narrative of the nineteenth-century avant-garde. Questions posed by contributors include: what interpretive approaches are open to a new generation of art historians in the wake of a vast body of existing scholarship on nineteenth-century art? In what ways can feminist analyses of Degas’s works continue to yield new results? Which of Degas’s works have received less attention in critical literature to date and what does study of them reveal? As the centenary of Degas’s death approaches, this book re-evaluates the critical reception of his work and identifies ways in which the further study of his multi-faceted output and its display can enhance understanding of the wider scientific, literary, and artistic ideas that circulated in France during the latter decades of the nineteenth century.

You can listen to a podcast about the book here: New Books in French.

The book has been reviewed in Nineteenth-Century French Studies, H-France, and French Studies.

My related publications about Degas include the following:

‘Degas in Pieces: Form and Fragment in the Late Bather Pastels’, Nineteenth-Century Art Worldwide, 17, no. 2 (Autumn 2018),

Exhibition Review: Degas: A Passion for Perfection’, Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge and ‘Degas Danse Dessin’, Musée d’Orsay, CAA Reviews (December, 2018).

Degas A Strange New Beauty Exhibition Catalogue

‘An “Anti-Spectacular” Art: Degas’s Monotypes for La Famille Cardinal’, in Edgar Degas: A Strange New Beauty, exh. cat. (New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2016).

‘Introduction’, Perspectives on Degas, (ed.) Kathryn Brown (Routledge, 2016).

‘Intimacy and Exclusion: Degas’s Monotypes for La Famille Cardinal’ in Perspectives on Degas, (ed.) Kathryn Brown (Routledge, 2016).

‘Touch and Vision in Edgar Degas’s Darkfield Monotypes’, Print Quarterly, XXXI, no. 4 (December, 2014), pp. 395–405.

‘The Aesthetics of Presence: Looking at Degas’s Bathers’ in The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, 68 (4), Fall, 2010, pp. 331–41.

‘Reading Bodies: Female Secrecy in the Works of Renoir and Degas’ in (ed.) Markus Hallensleben, Performative Body Spaces: Corporeal Topographies in Literature, Theatre, Dance and the Visual Arts (Rodopi, 2010), pp. 157–68.

‘The Spectator as Performer: Degas and the Ethics of Looking’ in (eds) D. Meyer Dinkgräfe and D. Watt, Ethical Encounters: Boundaries of Theatre, Performance and Philosophy (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010), pp. 174–85.

Book Review: Sara Campbell, Richard Kendall et. al, Degas in the Norton Simon Museum in The Art Book, 17 (1), 2010, pp. 23–4.

Related invited talks and conference papers:

‘Degas in Pieces: Rethinking the Late Bather Pastels’, College Art Association Annual Conference, New York (February, 2017).

‘Degas and the Nude’: Tulane University, USA (March, 2015).

‘Exiled From Light’: Undoing Pictorial Space in Edgar Degas’s Monotypes of the 1880s’, Nineteenth-Century French Studies Conference (Richmond, VA, October, 2013).

‘Realism and Indifference: Manet, Degas, Courbet’, International Conference on Visual Culture, National Central University, Taiwan (2012).

‘The Aesthetics of Presence: Looking at Degas’s Bathers’, Art History Colloquium, Tulane University, USA (2009).

‘Urban Conspiracies: Seeing and Spying in the Works of Edgar Degas’: Invited Speaker series ‘Metropolitan Consumers’, University of British Columbia (2008).


Edgar Degas, Mademoiselle Bécat aux Ambassadeurs, c. 1877,

National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.