College Of Arts And Sciences | Art and Power
E103 | 0091 | Facos

12:20-1:10 MW FA 010
The control and exercise of power is a constant in human society. Those
either possessing, criticizing, or seeking to displace power have always
relied heavily on visual culture's ability to persuade audiences. In this
course we will examine various kinds of power and the ways in which power
has harnessed visual culture, an inherently powerful mode of communication,
to achieve its goals. Our discussion stretches from ancient times to the
present, but concentrates on the modern era. Emphasis is placed on learning
to "read" and "decode" visual imagery in order to discover and then
interpret its various meanings, and also on expressing, orally and in
writing, the ways in which these images of power can be understood. Mostly,
this course is about looking critically at visual culture and learning to
ask questions that enable us to "see" beneath the surface and to understand
images in their cultural and historical contexts. Finally, we ask: what are
the devices which artists use in order to exercise power over viewers?