ARTH 4621/6621 Art and Empire in Britian and France - SPRING 21
T 9:05 am - 11 am - online
This seminar explores the images and objects produced, collected, and displayed in the context of the British and French empires of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Drawing on a range of perspectives—including postcolonial studies, critical race studies, and indigenous studies—we will develop a critical vocabulary for addressing the history of colonialism and the ongoing process of decolonization, asking what particular problems and opportunities art history presents for the study of empire. In what ways were aesthetics entangled with imperial ideology? How did works of art support or challenge dominant political, social, and cultural narratives? And what does a study of historic empires have to offer to our understanding of globalization today? We will also engage with the ways in which the legacy of empire is treated in contemporary museology. Readings on France and Britain will be combined with theoretical texts that have informed scholarship on the history of imperialism more broadly. Participants in the seminar are encouraged to apply the themes covered to a geographical area and time period of their choice in their final paper.