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The Logic of Absolution- If Dollars, Why Not Everything Else?1878
Frank Henry Temple BellewCawnpore, India 1828–1888 Cawnpore, India
Medium/Technique: Wood engraving
Credit Line: Gift of Judith and Norman Zlotsky
Not on display - Available to view by appointment
CommentaryThis cartoon by Frank Bellew seems to have been inspired by Nast ‘s illustration Milk Tickets for Babies, in Place of Milk, from the 1876 book Robinson Crusoe’s Money by David A. Wells. In that image, Nast’s inflation rag baby (“this is not a rag baby but a REAL baby by act of Cong[ress]”) receives a milk ticket (“This is MILK by act of com.[mittee]”) instead of real milk. A drawing of a cow tacked on the wall behind it is labeled: “This is a cow by act of the artist.” Bellew expands on Nast’s theme, prominently including inflation advocate Benjamin Butler holding “absolute money” (i.e., fiat money). [Text prepared for exhibition - Good as Gold (2009)]