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Support: LANA PUR FIL cream wove paper
Sheet: 48.5 x 37.9 cm (19 1/8 x 14 15/16 in.); Image: 25.2 x 20.2 cm (9 15/16 x 7 15/16 in.)
Gift of Agnes Gund and Daniel Shapiro 1998.11.2
© VAGA, New York, NY
This scene of a working-class woman returning to a ramshackle house after a long day's work dramatically expresses the abysmal poverty and bigotry faced by African American Southerners. Their plight led to the migration of nearly 250,000 black farmworkers to northern urban industrial centers by 1918. In the 1930s and '40s, their descendants, exploring their past, rediscovered the South as a place of beauty, strength, vitality, violence, and tradition. Woodruff, who was raised in Tennessee but had moved to Indiana and studied in Paris, went back to the South in 1931 to teach at Atlanta University, where he remained until 1945.
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