Ironies: Race, Gender and the Deception of "Freedom"

Peeling back the layers of lady liberty's meanings--those of her ancestry, those intended by her creators, and those coinicidentally aligned with her via her voyages--we cannot forget another layer of her significance: the way she has painfully and ironically represented the unfreedoms, the persistent tyranny and injustices, of the United States itself. The struggles of African-Americans and women to obtain equal rights and equal treatment, to be as free as white American men, may not emanate directly from the Bartholdi's Statue of Liberty or Crawford's Lady Freedom, but, today, representations of lady liberty cannot be fully explored without doing a double take and re-evaluating how her symbolism squares with honest reality.

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