Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Rethinking Impressionism
Academic Year
Semester 2
Other Staff

Course Delivery



Due to Covid-19 students should refer to the module Blackboard pages for assessment details

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Online Slide Test  (30 minutes)  15%
Semester Assessment Essay Plan  (comprising thesis statement, annotated bibliography of >8 secondary sources, annotated list of 4-6 illustrations - 1,500 words)  15%
Semester Assessment Essay  (2,000 words)  70%
Supplementary Assessment Online Slide Test  (30 minutes)  15%
Supplementary Assessment Essay Plan  (comprising thesis statement, annotated bibliography of >8 secondary sources, annotated list of 4-6 illustrations - 1,500 words)  15%
Supplementary Assessment Essay  (2,000 words)  70%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Identify key the artists, works, subjects, techniques, and ideas associated with Impressionism.

2. Locate and critically evaluate primary and secondary sources.

3. Assess specialised debates in secondary literature.

4. Interpret works of art based on knowledge of the appropriate historical and interpretative contexts.

5. Construct and justify a written argument about Impressionism, evaluating and applying different methods of approaching the discipline, and using the appropriate scholarly apparatus.

Brief description

From blockbuster exhibitions and scholarly books, to iPhone cases and handbags, Impressionism is everywhere. It can be difficult to go a week without somewhere seeing Claude Monet’s waterlilies, Edgar Degas’s ballerinas, Camille Pissarro’s sunsets, Pierre-Auguste Renoir’s portraits, or Berthe Morisot’s children. Ubiquitously reproduced in everyday life, Impressionist canvases have what's more become obscenely expansive: with Monet’s Nymphéas en fleur recently selling for $84,687,500.

Yet, at the same time, Impressionism is no longer central to the ongoing debates that are changing the face of art history: those on the global nineteenth-century, on migration and colonialism, on popular media and photography, and on objects and technology.

Refusing to side-line Impressionism, this module explores how it might be positively rethought in the light of contemporary concerns and made pertinent again for present debates.

In lectures, we’ll investigate how Impressionism was implicated in French colonialism, entangled with new technologies and media, and embroiled in new experiences of time, mind, and body; our three key themes being: time & technology, media & materials, and experience & the everyday. Seminars will set these brand-new interpretations in the longer context of Impressionism studies, examining how our current understanding builds on, and challenges, the ideas of the past.


1. Introduction to Rethinking Impressionism [Lecture]
2. Painting Quickly, Modern Time [Lecture]
3. Impressionism and Formalism [Seminar]
4. Elision, Dead Time, and the Memory Crisis [Lecture]
5. Ephemerality, Intermediality, and Ephemera [Lecture]
6. Impressionism, Photography, and Tourism [Lecture] & Impressionism and the Social History of Art [Seminar]
7. Industry, Materiality, and Impressionist Form [Lecture]
8. Assessment Preparation Week
9. Paris, Connected [Lecture]
10. Impressionism and Feminism [Seminar]
11. Impressions of Everyday Life: Attention and Distraction [Lecture]​​

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Communication Articulating orally ideas in seminar discussions, and textually in essay.
Improving own Learning and Performance Independent study through seminar assignment research and preparation; written and oral feedback on seminar contributions, essay plan, and essay.
Information Technology Conducting research through library catalogues, online scholarly databases and museum websites; engaging with digital platforms like Blackboard, Turnitin, Panopto.
Personal Development and Career planning Emphasis on professional presentation of research and essay plan using MLA style documentation.
Problem solving In seminar preparation and discussion, essay research and writing.
Research skills In seminar preparation, essay plan and essay research and writing.
Subject Specific Skills Ability to visually analyze works of art, set them in their historical context, and set these analyses in their respective art historiographic contexts.


This module is at CQFW Level 5