This course will illuminate the analytical, political and cultural possibilities of a variety of approaches to art history, and assess contemporary critical and theoretical currents that are redefining the field. We will critically examine the foundations of art history, and attempt to understand how approaches to understanding and interpreting art have evolved over time. Through critical reading and reflective response, we will not only engage with questions and debates that have shaped the field, but also begin to articulate our positions and voices in relation to key approaches including formalism, semiotics, Marxism, feminism, psychoanalysis, post-structuralism and post-colonialism.
Walter Benjamin, ‘The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction’ in Illuminations, edited by Hannah Arendt, translated by Harry Zohn, New York: Schocken Books, 1969 
Judith Butler, ‘Gender is Burning: Questions of Appropriation and Subversion’ in S. Thornham (ed.) Feminist Film Theory: A Reader, Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1999, pp. 381-395.
T J Demos (2009) ‘The Politics of Sustainability: Art and Ecology’ in Francesco Manacorda (ed) Radical Nature: Art and Architecture for a Changing Planet 1969–2009, Barbican Art Gallery, London, pp. 16–30.
Clement Greenberg, ‘Modernist Painting’ in C. Harrison and P. Woods (eds) Art in Theory 1900-1990: An Anthology of Changing Ideas, Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, pp. 754-760.
S Loewe (2015) ‘When Protest Becomes Art: The Contradictory Transformations of the Occupy Movement at Documenta 13 and Berlin Biennale 7’, Field: Journal of Socially Engaged Art.
Laura Mulvey, ‘Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema’ in Art After Modernism: Rethinking Representation (New York: The New Museum of Contemporary Art in association with David R. Godine, Publisher, Inc., Boston, 1984), pp. 361-373
Linda Nochlin, ‘Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?’ in Women, Art and Power and Other Essays, New York: Harper & Row, 1988), pp. 145-178
Craig Owens, ‘The Allegorical Impulse: Toward a Theory of Postmodernism’ October, Vol. 12 (Spring, 1980), pp. 67-86
Nikos Papastergiadis ‘Glimpses of Cosmopolitanism in the Hospitality of Art’, European Journal of Social Theory, vol, 10, no, 1, 2007, pp. 139-152