HIS 383 • Visual Cul in European History
3:00 PM-6:00 PM
Just as scholars have come to understand the ways that historical experience is constituted by language and the ways people talk about themselves and others, historical experience is also constituted by the visual environment in which people worked, walked, learned, fought and played. This course focuses upon the theory and practice of the production and. reception of visual objects and spaces in modern Western European history with a particular emphasis on twentieth century Germany and Russia. In this interdisciplinary course we will explore four central questions: (1)how have people in the past experienced their worlds visually? (2)how have people in the past constructed a visual record of their experiences?(i. e. family photographs) (3) what does visual evidence from the past and evidence about visual experience tell us that other forms of documentation do not? (4) how do the answers to these first three questions affect the way we think about and write history?
Peter Burke Eyewitnessing:The Uses of Images as Historical Evidence(London, 2001) Vanessa R. Schwartz and Jeannene M. Przyblyski,editors, The Nineteenth Century Visual Culture Reader(New York,2004) Leo Charney and Vanessa Schwartz,editors, Cinema and the Invention of Modern Life Patrice Petro, Joyless Streets. Women and Melodramatic Representation in Weimar Germany(Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989) Barbie Zelizer,editor, Visual Culture and the Holocaust(New Brunswick, 2001) Dagmar Barnouw, Germany 1945.Views of War and Violence Eric Rentschler, The Ministry of Illusion. Nazi Cinema and its Afterlife(Cambridge/London, 1996) Joshua Feinstein, The Triumph of the Ordinary. Depictions of Daily Life in the East German Cinema (Chapel Hill and London, 2002) Paul Betts, The Authority of Everyday Objects. A Cultural History of West German Industrial Design(Berkeley/Los Angeles/London: University of California Press, 2004)