RCHUMS 291 - The Experience of Arts and Ideas in the Nineteenth Century
Section: 001
Term: FA 2018
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 also 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, open to all students, will examine some of these changes and the interaction of art and social change by offering an introduction to major movements in European art and cultural history of the nineteenth century — Romanticism and Realism — by analyzing and comparing representative works of literature, painting, music, and dance. Among works studied will be paintings by Delacroix, Courbet, Monet, Degas, and Van Gogh, the writings by E.T.A. Hoffman and Hans Christian Anderson, novels by Emily Brontë, Gustave Flaubert, music of Beethoven, 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 does it reflect changes in the society that produced it?
  • How do the fairytales of E.T.A. Hoffman, the 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 the realist novels of Flaubert and the realist painting of the Impressionists?
  • How do they reflect the growing secularization of society brought about by scientific and political revolution?
  • Can we compare the revolution in the structure and subject matter of painting brought about by the Impressionist 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 portrayals of women the novels of Edith Wharton?

Course Requirements:

No data submitted

Intended Audience:

This course is open to all students. (LSA and otherwise) No previous experience necessary.

Class Format:

No data submitted

RCHUMS 291 - The Experience of Arts and Ideas in the Nineteenth Century
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
MW 4:00PM - 5:30PM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

ISBN: 9780199535590
Jane Eyre, Author: Bronte?, Charlotte ( 1816-1855), Publisher: Oxford University Press 2008
ISBN: 9780199538102
House of mirth., Author: Wharton, Edith.
ISBN: 9780143106494
Madame Bovary : provincial ways, Author: Flaubert, Gustave, 1821-1880., Publisher: Penguin 2012
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