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Title

"Beautiful Work": The Works Progress Administration Arts Programs 1935-1944

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Abstract

On May 6, 1935 Roosevelt set into motion the controversial division of the Works Progress Administration, the Federal Art Project. During its short history, the Federal Art Project would become the target of the United States House Committee on Un-American Activities, which attempted to link certain artistic expressions with "communist" ideals. Communism fears are typically remembered as being during the Cold War Era of 1947-1992. However, the fear began sooner which can be seen in the investigation of the WPA. In my paper I am exploring how the partisan hunt for communism bleeds into the criticism of art and the Works Progress Administration's Art Programs.

Start Date

13-4-2021 1:00 PM

End Date

13-4-2021 2:00 PM

Faculty Advisor

Brian Roberts

Department

Department of History

Student Type

Undergraduate Student

Comments

This entry was part of the following session of the event:

  • Session title: Historical Analyses; Tuesday, April 13, 2021; 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.; Moderator: Benjamin Forsyth.

Electronic copy is not available through UNI ScholarWorks.

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Apr 13th, 1:00 PM Apr 13th, 2:00 PM

"Beautiful Work": The Works Progress Administration Arts Programs 1935-1944

On May 6, 1935 Roosevelt set into motion the controversial division of the Works Progress Administration, the Federal Art Project. During its short history, the Federal Art Project would become the target of the United States House Committee on Un-American Activities, which attempted to link certain artistic expressions with "communist" ideals. Communism fears are typically remembered as being during the Cold War Era of 1947-1992. However, the fear began sooner which can be seen in the investigation of the WPA. In my paper I am exploring how the partisan hunt for communism bleeds into the criticism of art and the Works Progress Administration's Art Programs.