Teen Angel: 15th-Century Girl Makes Good in 'Joan of Arc' (exhibition review);





"Joan of Arc" at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, though not much of an art show, is a powerful and learned study in renown.

The little Latin books, medieval swords, dinner bells and film stills crowded in its cases aren't what mainly matter. What matters is the girlish, great, utterly improbable person they call forth, and the forces she deploys on her long, triumphant march into your mind.

Joan of Arc (1412-1431), dead while in her teens, didn't have much time. She made the most of what she had. That illiterate, sincere, cross-dressing young woman -- who talked to saints and angels, led an army into battle and helped liberate her land -- got as close to immortality as humans ever get.


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