Art: Yiddish Hurdler

When Sculptor Frederick William MacMonnies was commissioned (in the will of Mrs. Angelina Crane) to fashion a statue of Civic Virtue for Manhattan's City Hall Park, he modeled an upright youth spurning two coiled mermaids who represented Deceit and Disillusion. The unveiling in 1922 caused an unavailing delirium of protests from women's organizations and others which found, in the sex of Disillusion and Deceit and in their proximity to the youth's feet, an affront to womanhood. Glad of an opportunity to have fun, Manhattan newspapers exulted in lavish, impartial ridicule, made...

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