RCHUMS 291 - The Experience of Arts and Ideas in the Nineteenth Century
Section: 001
Term: FA 2007
Subject: RC Humanities (RCHUMS)
Department: LSA Residential College
Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

The nineteenth century was marked not only by revolutionary changes in society but by artistic revolution. By the beginning of the twentieth century the conventions of style and subject matter of virtually every major art form — painting, music, dance, and literature — had been radically altered and the role of the artist in society had been radically redefined. This interdisciplinary course will examine some of these changes and offer an introduction to major movements in European art and cultural history of the nineteenth century — Romanticism, Realism, Impressionism, and Symbolism — by analyzing and comparing representative works of literature, dance, music, and the visual arts. Among possible works studied will be paintings by Delacroix, Courbet, Manet, Degas, Monet, and Van Gogh, novels by Zola, Brontë, and Flaubert, music of Berlioz and Debussy, and ballets of Perrot and Bournonville.

We'll be asking some of the following kinds of questions:

  • What is the revolution of style and subject matter brought about by Romantic art?
  • How do Coralli and Perrot's ballet Giselle and the Symphonie Fantastique of Berlioz reflect these changes and the new attitude of the artist towards himself and his art?
  • Can we find similar aims in certain realist novels of Zola and the realist painting of Courbet and Manet?
  • Can we compare the revolution in the structure and subject matter of painting brought about by the Impressionist and Symbolist painters to the revolution in form brought to music by Debussy?
  • What can we learn about the evolving view of women's place in society by comparing the portrayal of women in paintings by Berthe Morisot and Edouard Manet and the portrayal of women in literature by Ibsen and Edith Wharton?

These and other questions will be considered by Beth Genné and class.

RCHUMS 291 - The Experience of Arts and Ideas in the Nineteenth Century
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
MW 4:30PM - 6:00PM
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