Visual Studies Courses

Courses for 2014-15

Core Courses:

HAVC 201: Introduction to Visual Studies (Fall)
Introduces the visual studies discipline and the History of Art and Visual Culture Department, providing students with an overview of the field's development, its issues of central concern, and its dominant research methods. Features intensive readings, student-led discussions, and exposure to some of the primary texts instrumental in the development of the field. Required seminar for all first-year visual studies graduate students. J. Gonzalez

HAVC 202: Theories of the Visual (Winter)
Offers detailed theoretical readings to familiarize students with the methodological frameworks and debates that laid the groundwork for the field as well as those that have proven productive for practitioners of visual studies. (Formerly Critical Theory.) D. Murray

HAVC 203: Theories and Histories of Seeing (Spring)
Each spring quarter this course makes use of a different cultural case study to sensitize students to the historically specific paradigms that have guided human vision (and to illustrate the ways in which particular societies consciously conceptualized vision). The society under consideration will change each year, depending on the research interests of the faculty member teaching the course. Students will take the course twice.

Spring 2015 version of 203: Remote Sensation: Distancing Vision, 19th Century-Present
This seminar explores issues surrounding the visual culture of remote sensing technologies from the 19th century to the present. Whether in the targeted aerial views of the drone pilot or visualizations of geospatial satellite data, imagery derived from mechanical devices aimed at extending the range of human vision has proliferated in the last decade across a wide array of fields. Following writings from multiple disciplines that have begun to assess the complex ways in which these technologies collapse the invisible and far-away into the everyday, this class will attempt to trace a history of remote sensation from the standpoint of visual culture. After an introduction to the relationships between modern technology and vision established in early examples of remote sensing photography, the seminar will focus on the decades after World War II, when the term “remote sensing” itself was first employed in the context of scientific research. Projects and readings from the areas of art, urban planning, ecology, military history, and sociology will provide an entry point into the intertwined aesthetic, environmental, and political dimensions of remote sensation. A. Narath

HAVC 204/FILM 204: Grant Writing (Winter and Spring)
Instruction and practice in writing grant proposals. Students will work on grants for educational support, their doctoral dissertation research and writing, or both. Open to Visual Studies and Film & Digital Media students only. (2 credits, may be repeated for credit.) 2014-15 course will be taught by Film & Digital Media Faculty, I. Gustafson.


HAVC 250: The Cult of Mary in Byzantium: Visualities of Political, Religious and Gender Constructs (Winter)
Through the study of the Byzantine cult of Mary we examine diverse modalities in the construction and interaction of political, religious and gender values, and we investigate the interrelated role of images, rituals and texts in human experience, expression and communication. M. Evangelatou

HAVC 280: Visual Studies Issues: Aniconology (Spring)
Although aniconism is a significant aspect of visual cultures globally, the non-imageoranicon has yet to be theorized cross-culturally. In both Art History and Visual Studies, anicons have been treated “like images, only different,” and subject to theories and methods designed specifically with regard to imagery. This seminar takes aim at visual theory that subjects anicons to image-based methods of analysis, asking how we might re-think non-imagism. Ultimately, the goal of this seminar is to craft a theory of the anicon based on cross-cultural case studies. C. Dean

HAVC 297: Independent Study
Independent study or research for graduate students. Students submit petition to sponsoring agency. May be repeated for credit. The Staff

Additional Electives (see Catalog)

  • HAVC 212, Yoruba Visualities and Aesthetics, E. Cameron
  • HAVC 213, Theories and Visual Cultures of Iconoclasm, E. Cameron
  • HAVC 220, Topics in Asian Visual Studies: Queer Theory and VC of SE Asia and its Diaspora, B. Ly
  • HAVC 222, The Image of Arhat in China, R. Birnbaum
  • HAVC 224, Engaged Buddhism and Visual Culture, B. Ly
  • HAVC 232, The Monument Since 1750 in Relation to Nationhood and the Experience of War, D. Hunter
  • HAVC 233, Topics in Contemporaty Art and VC: Critical Race Visual Studies
  • HAVC 235, Photography and History, M. Berger
  • HAVC 240, Seeing Race, M. Berger
  • HAVC 243, Alternative Architecture
  • HAVC 245, Race and Representation, J. Gonzalez
  • HAVC 260, Visual Literacy in Spanish American, 1500-1800, C. Dean
  • HAVC 270, Colonial Cultures of Collecting and Display, S. Kamehiro

The electives listed here constitute just a sampling of the courses open to Visual Studies graduate students. Prospective students are encouraged to consult the graduate course offerings of the departments and programs of Anthropology, Digital Arts and New Media, Film and Digital Media, History, History of Consciousness and Philosophy, whose seminars are also open to our students.


Additional Courses:

HAVC 294: Teaching-Related Independent Study
Directed graduate research and writing coordinated with the teaching of undergraduates. Students submit petition to sponsoring agency. May be repeated for credit. The Staff

HAVC 295: Directed Reading
Directed reading that does not involve a term paper. Students submit petition to course-sponsoring agency. Enrollment restricted to graduate students. May be repeated for credit. The Staff

HAVC 299: Thesis Research
Students submit petition to course sponsoring agency. Enrollment restricted tro graduate students. May be repeated for credit. The Staff