Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
The Pre-Raphaelites
Academic Year
Semester 2
Exclusive (Any Acad Year)
AH30020 Levelized

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Essay Plan  1500 Words  30%
Semester Assessment Essay  3500 Words  70%
Supplementary Assessment Essay Plan  1500 Words  30%
Supplementary Assessment Essay  3500 Words  70%

Learning Outcomes

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

Identify the key visual characteristics of Pre-Raphaelite art and explain the artistic practices underlying them.

Explain the historical contexts for Pre-Raphaelitism and assess their impact on Pre-Raphaelite art.

Analyse and interpret works of Pre-Raphaelite art, including directly from the object.

Analyse and interpret written primary sources to contextualise Pre-Raphaelite art.

Analyse and interpret secondary sources on Pre-Raphaelite art.

Construct and justify a historical argument about Pre-Raphaelite art using the appropriate scholarly apparatus.

Brief description

In 1848, deep in the heart of Bloomsbury, seven young artists and writers formed a secret society committed to revolutionising British art. Known as the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, this group shocked and offended critics with their provocative primitivism and uncompromising realism. Seeming to reject modernity by emulating medieval and Renaissance art, the Pre-Raphaelite way of seeing in fact reflected the turbulent economic, social, technological, and philosophical changes that were transforming nineteenth-century Britain. This module explores the complex art of the Pre-Raphaelites by investigating their key innovations, formative influences, pertinent contexts, and artistic and critical legacies.


Taking a 'flipped learning' approach, students will read essential texts and watch pre-recorded lectures (1 hour per week) as guided independent study. Classroom time (1 hour per week) will be divided between student-led Q&A and discussion about the lectures, in-depth seminar-style discussion of important primary sources, and collaborative visual analysis of Pre-Raphaelite artworks in the School of Art Museum collection. Each student will also have a 1:1 tutorial for tailored feedback and guidance for their essay.

Lectures introduce the practices and contexts that are essential to understand Pre-Raphaelite art. The topics covered will evolve over time in response to the coordinator's research and the latest developments in the field. As an indication, we will examine the Pre-Raphaelites': debts to early Flemish and Italian art; attitudes to nature in the contexts of industrialisation and the ideas of John Ruskin; engagement with photography and modern science; poetry, writings and cross-pollination of image and text; avant-garde promotional strategies in the contexts of Victorian art criticism and exhibition culture; laborious working method in relation to Victorian class politics; religious and moral beliefs; practices in relation to gender and sexuality, focussing especially on woman and queer artists; and pivotal influence on the Arts & Craft and Aesthetic movements that came in their wake.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Adaptability and resilience Flipped classroom model encourages students to adapt to a diverse mix of learning environments, including online and in-person, individual and collaborative. The guided independent study component encourages students to take responsibility for their own work; practice effective time management; work autonomously, diligently, and resiliantly. Assessment tasks require students to work to briefs and deadlines, including managing concurrent projects.
Co-ordinating with others Collaborative discussion of primary sources in seminars, lecture & secondary sources in Q&A, and artworks in visual analysis sessions requires students to co-ordinate and commincate effectively with others, including being both open-minded and critical about unfamiliar arguments and divergent points of view.
Creative Problem Solving Constructing and justifying a historical argument requires students to creatively solve a range of problems relating to the location, interpretation, and evaluation of written evidence; analysis and interpretation of artworks; development of a convincing and independent argument informed by, but not dependent on, authorities in the subject area.
Critical and analytical thinking Systematic visual analysis of artworks (based on accurate and detailed description using appropriate disciplinary vocabulary; and informed by appropriate knowledge of materials, techniques and cultural contexts) is demonstrated in lectures, practiced in visual analysis sessions, and assessed in the essay plan & essay. Critical analysis of written sources is demonstrated in lectures, practiced in seminars (primary sources) & Q&A sessions (secondary sources) and assessed in the essay plan & essay.
Digital capability Flipped classroom model includes digitial delivery of asychronous lectures and related individual and collaborative activities, utilising platforms including Panopto and Blackboard. Students locate sources using digital library and museum databases.
Professional communication Guided classroom discussions model professional standards and expectations of academic debate, including the ability to listen effectively, participate constructively in discussion, and communicate points effectively. Essay and essay plan require conformity with scholarly norms in relation to communicating information, arguments, and ideas (particualrly in relation to visual material) and documenting sources.
Subject Specific Skills Visual and critical skills (observation, description, interrogation, interpretation of visual artefacts & written sources). Historical skills (locate and assess primary sources; select relevant evidence & apply it to support historical argument; construct logical and convincing arguments explaining the art of the past; assess specialised scholarly debates and situate oneself in relation to them). Research skills (locate and retrieve information and sources, digitally and physically).


This module is at CQFW Level 5