Episode #4: The Problem of Michelangelo's Women / by Jennifer Dasal

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There are lots of questions that come up in every art history classroom or lecture hall. We hear them over and over again. What is art, really, and how can you define it? Why is the Mona Lisa smiling? What happened to the Winged Victory’s arms? And there's another one that you'll hear, or that you'll even think yourself, especially if you are a fan or scholar of a particular Renaissance master's works. It's a question that I have personally heard asked point-blank in class and whispered in sacred spaces in Rome and in Florence. Visitors straining their necks to stare up at a ceiling, and others sneaking peeks at gleaming marble tombs have asked this question. Why, they ask. Why are Michelangelo’s women so… well, so un-womanly?

What's going on here? 

In this episode, we are going to uncover the conundrum of Michelangelo's women and some theories behind their design, including one fascinating idea set aside by a 21st century physician.

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