Homoeroticism and the Visual Arts 1750 – 1920
Tuesday, Thursday: 12:30-2:00pm
This course deals with same-same attractions and the visual arts (concentrating on painting, sculpture, and photography), from the mid-eighteenth century to the end of the First World War, looking at individual artists, particular art movements (ranging from neoclassicism through academic painting to impressionism and sundry avant-garde modernisms), art collectors, artwriters, and theories of the arts. In addition, we will consider how art history has approached the study of these materials. One major theme will be the consolidation of the major modern theories of human sexuality in this period, and how artists and artwriters understood and employed these theories, such as Darwin’s concept of sexual selection, the emerging medical-psychiatric definition of “homosexuality,” and the rise of Sigmund Freud’s analysis of essential human “bisexuality.” While our focus will be on Euro-American contexts in this period (especially Britain, France, Germany, and the United States), we will also look at colonial contexts (e.g., of the British empire).
This course fulfills the following requirements for the History of Art major: Geographical area (A) and Chronological period (III).