Todd Porterfield is Canada Research Chair in Nineteenth-Century Art History and professor of Art History at the Université de Montréal. He is a research specialist and professor of European, especially French, nineteenth-century art and politics across a variety of artistic media. His Canada Research Chair is devoted to examining art’s role in modern authoritarian practice. Porterfield posits that art and art history, like Orientalism and Occidentalism, derive from the master discourse of civilization. Essential markers as defined by the late 18th-century French Ideologues—vital art, the status of women, and technological growth—have been consistent points of research interest. His current SSHRC-funded project examines how in a time of brewing instability in artistic, social, and political spheres, caricature rose up against insecure modern claims to the (ostensible) timelessness and naturalness of artistic and political authority. Complex and relevant, it drew from the august traditions of high art while emerging into a nascent mass culture that seemed to broadcast at lightning speed to a limitless public. Whether refreshing or threatening, caricature seemed to offer an unmediated unmasking of political and social facts, allowing direct access to unennobling truths at the dawn of modern politics.