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DepositParis in Architecture, Literature, and Art

Paris in Architecture, Literature and Art is a student textbook and teacher manual in cultural studies that capitalizes on the little exposure liberal arts students have to architecture, and the widespread popularity of Paris across the curriculum. Designed for a college course in the humanities, the book is also suitable for a High School course or a study abroad program in Paris. It focuses on Paris, which throughout history has been the stage and experimental ground for artists and intellectuals from all over the world, making it the crucible of western thoughts and consummate material for an interdisciplinary study. The book presents an overview of Paris from the Middles Ages to present, each chapter focusing on an intellectual movement such as Gothic, classical, romantic, impressionist, cubist and modern. The interdisciplinary approach promotes critical thinking, inspiring students to identify and translate esthetic concepts from one discipline to another, and explore, for instance, what impressionist literature or cubist architecture might be. The teacher manual provides detailed commentaries of all documents presented in the student textbook, with analysis that will be engaging to a scholar, but also accessible to instructors without a background in architecture, literature or art. The wide variety of pedagogical features gives flexibility for instructors to fit their specific areas of interest, as well as those of the target audience. Among those, preamble activities and timelines introduce chapters’ main idea, observation questions build critical reading and analyzing skills, interactive activities foster cooperative learning, and projects lead to oral and short film presentations.

TopicPublic Arts/Criticism @ASAP/7

ASAP/7: Arts & the Public, September 24-27, 2015 (Clemson University) For ASAP (Association for the Study of the Arts of the Present) conference, ASAP/7: Arts & the Public, September 24-27, 2015, hosted by Clemson University. Looking for papers for a panel on pamphleteers, broadsiders, sidewalk ranters, bloggers, trollers, Tweeters, and other creators of public acts […]

DepositThe correspondence of the arts in a Fin de Siècle Magazine. The “Livre d’Art” at the crossroads of Modernism

The main topic of this article is the history of a rare and precious French magazine of the late Nineteenth century, in which a vivid and crucial discussion about arts and their inter-relation grew the more and more intense in the short space of four years (1892-1896). The “Livre d’Art” was first conceived as a simple booklet to be distributed to the spectators of the experimental plays of the ”Théâtre d’Art”, but it soon became a sophisticated art object, which merged figurative and poetic art in order to create a mutual relation of authentic correspondence among them, thus overcoming the wagnerian idea of Gesamtkumstwerk. We are then going to focus on the second series of the Livre d’Art (1896), that exhibits a new tendency towards Modernism and Internationalism, opening towards Belgian, German and English artistic and literary movements, such as Jugendstil and Arts and Crafts, but opening also to contemporary theatre aesthetics, publishing i.e. Jarry’s Ubu Roi.

DepositDissimulation in the Commedia dell’Arte of Flaminio Scala

Commedia dell’Arte was the most influential and widespread theatre movement in sixteenth and early seventeenth-century Europe. A considerable part of its popularity can be accounted for by its comic representation of stressful occurrences within everyday life in early modern Europe, including in its representation of the period’s widespread dissimulation, that is, the hiding of one’s true thoughts and motives by means of discretion, indirection, and outright deceit. The theatricality of Commedia dell’Arte, among other things, provided a way for the audience to briefly dissociate itself from and to fantasize about ways of coping with dissimulation. A number of characteristics of Commedia dell’Arte, including disguise, lying, tricks, spying and gossip, and portrayals of honor, previously seen as separate, cohere in the concept of dissimulation. Natalie Crohn Schmitt is Professor of Theatre and of English, Emerita, University of Illinois at Chicago. She recently published Befriending the Commedia dell’Arte of FlaminioScala: The Comic Scenarios (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2014).

DepositThe Art of Negotiation: Student Writers Claiming Authority and Humility

One of the hardest concepts to teach first-year composition students is the role of authority in academic writing. How are young adults who have a limited social world view and older adults who have left school for several years expected to assert themselves with confidence? Equally, another difficult threshold concept for FYC students is the act of humility in academic writing. Student writers need to acknowledge their limitations if they are going to establish authority in their writing. In my paper, I look closely at four students’ essays, examining how they venture and participate in academic conversations as they negotiate the role of humility and authority.

DepositArt, Literature and Revolution in Latin America: Telling the Story

Course Description: As German intellectual Walter Benjamin writes in his essay “The Storyteller”, “Experience which is passed on from mouth to mouth is the source from which all storytellers have drawn.” In the process of sharing experiences, more stories are born with authorship that are common while at the same time recognizing the individual opening of the hearer and the teller. In this course, we will explore storytelling as a way to understand the changes that Latin America went through during the twentieth-century: from dictatorships and revolutions to efforts for reconciliation and preservation of memory. The course content will include diverse forms of art, including poetry, mural paintings, photography, testimonies, music, and novels. Equally important, students will be placed in bi-weekly engagement with a Latin American immigrant from the London (Ontario) community. Students will maintain a portfolio to keep notes, reactions, and thoughts about their conversations, class discussions, readings, and own reflections. Based on the portfolio, students will share one story with the rest of the class at the end of the term. Revolutionary movements: we will be able to discern, survive and keep growing in a large part because of its storytelling component, the sharing of experiences from mouth to mouth.

DepositThe Art of the Book in the Digital Age syllabus (undergraduate course)

The attached syllabus was written for my Honors undergraduate seminar “The Art of the Book in the Digital Age,” taught Fall 2016 at UNC Chapel Hill. Here is an excerpt from the course description: “The book’s role and significance within literary culture is being scrutinized today with an intensity unseen for five centuries. Nowhere is this questioning more acute, sophisticated, and nuanced than in the burgeoning field of the book arts, an umbrella term encompassing artists’ books, book sculpture, zines, and print-oriented forms of electronic poetry. This is an inherently collaborative and interdisciplinary field. Its practitioners skirt the thresholds between visual art and literature, technology and philosophy, producing uniquely bookish artifacts that defy easy categorization. These are artworks made not for the white walls of a gallery, but to be read and used; they are works of literature that engage the visual, tactile, and even olfactory senses. Difficult to reproduce in print editions or literary anthologies, they challenge our expectations of the codex as a platform for delivering and consuming textual information. Despite the diversity of the book arts, what brings these practices together is a shared interest in the potential of the book to model radical new forms of creativity, subjectivity, and political engagement. ‘if i can sing through my mouth with a book,’ writes El Lissitzky in a treatise on book design, ‘i can show myself in various guises.'”