Literary Analysis Of Kollwitz's The Peasant War

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‘Uprising’, an Expressionistic piece dated 1899, illustrates the revolt of the working-class, with the depiction of an allegorical nude female leading the peasants beneath her, charging forth at an unseen entity. This work explores a concept similar to that of Kollwitz’s cycle ‘The Peasant War’ which features ‘Black Anna’, a woman Kollwitz saw as an important figure in stirring significant social changes. Adopting a landscape layout, ‘Uprising’ is an asymmetrically balanced work that bears resemblance to the work, ‘Die Satanisten. Satan sät die Hexenbrut ' dated 1882. The only observed female of this artwork is portrayed with surrealistic proportions in her most vulnerable state - nude and exposed - whilst wielding a torch in her hands, her back leg swung up in a fleeing motion. Although unclear in this version of the work, the coloured ‘planning’ of this piece features the woman to be bearing a torch of flames that has ignited fire in the burning building behind her. Under the woman, a group of ‘peasants’ hold weapons in their hands - some concealed and some shown outright. The figure furthest to the right holds a flag over his head, as every subject charges forth in the same direction. The crosshatching on the men’s clothing and the straight lines defining their muscles convey them as having thrived under harsh living conditions. The bony and geometrically defined face structure of the ‘peasants’ bear resemblance to the art movement Cubism, which follows after

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