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Becoming PastHistory in Contemporary Art$
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Jane Blocker

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780816696970

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816696970.001.0001

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The Empty Stage

The Empty Stage

A Story About the Past by Matthew Buckingham

(p.103) Four The Empty Stage
Becoming Past

Jane Blocker

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter contemplates artist Matthew Buckingham’s 1996 film Amos Fortune Road, which focuses on the relation between factual and fictional representations of the past by looking at the archival record of the life of Amos Fortune, an African slave who died in 1801. It argues that Buckingham hollows out Fortune’s 18th century history and fills it with parallel events from the present. He usefully subjects history to doubt, and lines up two historical narratives in the same space.

Keywords:   Matthew Buckingham, Amos Fortune Road, representation, past, Amos Fortune, African slave, present, history, historical narratives

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