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Word Count: 813
Eduard Munch 1863-1944 was a Norwegian painter engraver and printer He is often reputed to have been a loner and a misogynist Many of his works revolve around a motif concerning women and their obscene vulgarity The two works that will be described here are Vampire 1893 and Jealousy 1896 These two depict women as creatures of temptation petty provokers of pain and selfish enslavers of vulnerable men To just marginally understand Munchs hatred of women one must read upon his tragic past Tuberculosis killed his mother when he was only five years old it killed his sister Sophie whom Munch felt closest to nine years later In addition to these tragic events were his unsuccessful love affairs which all together bludgeoned his faith in women In Vampire Munch displays a scene in which a woman seems to be embracing a man She appears to be kissing him on the neck but the title of the work diminishes that meaning Although Munch intended the action of the work as just a kiss he later changed the name to Vampire possibly to capitalize on the 19th century literary obsession with vampires The intense switch in meaning plays on the mind of the viewer very curiously It turns from compassion for the two lovers to sympathy and sorrow for the victimized man The womans red hair becomes almost demonic and the backgrounds darkness transforms from a sorrow-filled unity between the two figures to a desolate ambiance of confusion The dark green in the background is tranquil but the viewers knowledge of the situation happening to the vulnerable man leaves the viewer in a state of ambiguity A peaceful image is portrayed but the woman is literally sucking the life out of the man The red hair can be seen as a rainfall of blood emasculating the victim The man has been deceived into finding love where there is unhappiness He has found the tortures of being in
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