Module Identifier AH30110  
Academic Year 2003/2004  
Co-ordinator Ms Moira M Vincentelli  
Semester Semester 1  
Course delivery Lecture   10 Hours  
  Seminars / Tutorials   5 Hours Seminar.  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours  50%
Semester Assessment Essay:  50%

Brief description

Module AH30110

Module Title Art and Society 1

Academic Year 2003/4

Course Co-ordinator   Moira Vincentelli

Other Staff

Semester 1

Assessment Essay (2500 words) 50%
2 hour examination 50%

Brief description
The aim of this course is to examine selected aspects of non-western visual culture in their social and historical context and to consider the on-going interchange between cultures which is not just a phenomenon of the recent past. The course will examine critically the concept of 'primitivism' and notions of 'art' and the 'artist' and will look at the way non-western art is displayed in exhibitions and museums, promoted in development projects, and marketed in shops. Theoretical issues will be examined through case studies of particular societies and historical moments. These will be used to consider how visual cultural artefacts are produced, used and valued by their own society and how these values may change when they are exchanged or seen outside that culture through, for example, colonisation, trade and tourism. The course will also consider who makes these things: is it men or women, artists or artisans, individuals or groups, people of high or low status, or with special or even magical powers, and are they full-time producers or occasional workers?

Learning Outcomes At the end of the course you should be able to

1. problematise concepts such as `art?, `the artist?, ` primitivism? in the context of the study of World Art and apply these to particular case studies or examples.

2. recognise the way that cultural exchange through trade, colonisation, and tourism affects the values attributed to art and artefacts and the status of the producers. You will understand the role of museums and exhibitions in this process and be able to apply these ideas to particular examples.

3. be effective in note-taking, reading critically, library research, essay writing and the presentation of ideas in class discussion.

Short Bibliography

James Clifford, The Predicament of Culture Twentieth century Ethnography, Literature and Art, , London,Harvard U.P., Cambridge Mass. 1988
Shelley Errington The Death of Authentic Primitve Art and Other Tales of progress, U. of California Press, 1998
Jeremy MacClancy Contesting Art, Art Politics and Identity in the Modern World, Berg, Oxford, 1997
Ruth Phillips and Christopher Steiner (eds) Unpacking Culture, Art and Commodity in Colonial and Postcolonial Worlds, University of California, Berkeley, 1999
Nicholas Thomas Possessions, Indigenous Art, Colonial Culture, London Thames and Hudson, 1999
Olu Oguibe and O. Enwzor (eds) Reading the Contemporary, African Art from Theory to the Marketplace London, INIVA, 1999


This module is at CQFW Level 6