Fall 2012: Introduction to Visual Studies
This course will introduce students to the trans-disciplinary field of Visual Studies.
This course will introduce students to the trans-disciplinary field of Visual Studies. This field not only concerns itself with traditional visual media and artifacts such as those already taken seriously by art historians and film theorists, i.e., painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, etc.—Visual Studies also seeks to examine images of all kinds, their systems of transmission, their points of consumption, and the very limits of visuality itself. E.g., these limits require an investigation of "blindness" as both trope and physical disability, the presumptions that privilege some senses over others and bother counting them at all, and the ambivalent denigrations that relate showing to telling: looks can be deceiving, but even a thousand words don’t measure up to a single picture. The course will ask both "what is there to see?" and "what is it to see?" and will take these questions to the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences.
Sponsored By: the John B. Hurford '60 Center for the Arts and Humanities