Decolonizing Ancient Mediterranean Art
Mon, Wed, Fri: 3:00-4:00pm
This class examines new and innovative ways of “seeing”, discussing, analyzing and critically thinking about ancient Mediterranean material culture. There is a real urgency and agency in stripping away old models for understanding the past – this class embarks on exciting and new trajectories within art history and material culture studies. It not only addresses issues of colonial powers and their impact on indigenous peoples throughout the Mediterranean, but also looks at new, non-conventional approaches to critically analyzing ancient art, i.e., focusing on issues of identity, hybridity, diversity, marginalized groups, etc. Special attention will be spent on how to discuss decolonizing in the ancient world while addressing the impact of imperial systems and settler colonization not just in antiquity, but within the field and academy itself. What is intrinsically hierarchal about the “classical cannon”? Why do scholars continue to insist on the “exceptionalism” of imperial Greece and Rome? By addressing these questions, we will examine how such constructs have deeply impacted the view of ancient Mediterranean art as a whole. The class is thus a “journey” of sorts, a dialogue with art, cultures and historicities in an attempt to explore ancient Mediterranean art through a decolonizing lens.
This course fulfills the following requirements for the History of Art major: Geographical area (A) or (C) and Chronological period (I) or (III), based on the topic of the final research paper or project.
*This course will not meet for discussion section.