Unit 1: Objects

Thurs, August 29 [slides]:

Topic: Introductions

Tues, September 3 [slides] | Thurs, September 5 [slides]:


Discuss: Early photograph portraits of Sojourner Truth and Frederick Douglass
Portraits by Dorothea Lange | “Pictures and Progress,” poem by Amanda Gorman

Read:The Racial Bias Built Into Photography” by Sarah Lewis
Introduction to Pictures and Progress by Maurice O. Wallace and Shawn Michelle Smith

Tues, September 10 [slides] | Thurs, September 12 [slides]:

Topic: VISUAL REPRESENTATIONS (Data visualization)

Discuss: W.E.B. Du Bois’ hand-drawn infographics | Brooks Slave Ship drawing
“How We Can Find Ourselves in Data,” talk by Giorgia Lupi
“Song of Myself,” excerpts from the poem by Walt Whitman

Read:Chapter 1: Telling Stories with Data” from Visualize This by Nathan Yau
Why you should never trust a data visualisation” by John Burn-Murdoch

[Project #1 due Sunday, September 15]
Tues, September 17 [slides] | Thurs, September 19 [slides]: 

Topic: PRINT PUBLICATIONS (Ephemera & periodicals)

Discuss: Abolitionist print ephemera | Poems on Miscellaneous Subjects by Frances E.W. Harper
Modernist periodicals | “The Fish,” poem by Marianne Moore

Read:How Paper Shaped Civilization” by Reid Mitenbuler
On Graphic Arts and Ephemera,” interview with Mita Mahato
Definition of Ephemera” by Bruce Shyer
Whatever Happened to High Culture?” by Joseph Epstein

[Personal Essay due Sunday, September 22]
Tues, September 24 [slides] | Thurs, September 26 [slides]:

Topic: PRINT PUBLICATIONS (Typography)

Discuss: Typographical design in David Walker’s “Appeal” | Typewriter poems by e.e. cummings
“Paula Scher: Graphic Design” from Abstract: The Art of Design

Read: NONE

[Project #2 due Sunday, September 29]
Tues, October 1 [slides] | Thurs, October 3 [slides]:


Discuss: Leaves of Grass, excerpts of Walt Whitman’s poem drafts
“I Never Hear That One Has Died” and other envelope poem drafts by Emily Dickinson

Read:Posthumous Publication: Writing from Beyond the Grave” by Stuart Kelly
How Capitalism Changed American Literature” by Dan Sinykin

Tues, October 8 | Thurs, October 10:

Topic: Class visit to Rose Library on Tuesday ** ATTENDANCE IS MANDATORY **


Read: NONE

Unit 2: Spaces

Tues, October 15 | Thurs, October 17:

NO CLASS (Fall Break | Instructor at conference)

[Project #3 due Sunday, October 20]
Tues, October 22 [slides] | Thurs, October 24 [slides]:

Topic: MUSEUMS (Physical)

Discuss: First Monday in May documentary | Museum ethics

Read: How the Parthenon Lost Its Marbles” By Juan Pablo Sánchez
Non-Western Art In The Museum: Appreciation or Appropriation?” by Nur Sevencan
Museums Must Attract Diverse Visitors or Risk Irrelevance” by Peggy Levitt

Tues, October 29 [slides] | Thurs, October 31 [slides]:

Topic: MUSEUMS (Virtual)

Discuss: Virtual tours of the British Museum and the Acropolis Museum | Physical spaces

Read: Museums Want to Entertain You (and That’s Not a Bad Thing)” by Hampton Stevens
Alone in the Virtual Museum” by Alexandra Shwartz
The Museums of Instagram” by Sophie Haigney

[Project #4 due Sunday, November 3]
Tues, November 5 | Thurs, November 7 [slides]:

Topic: MUSEUMS (Virtual)

Discuss: Technology vs. culture | Digital spaces

Read: NONE

Tues, November 12 | Thurs, November 14: 


Discuss: Fyre documentary | Digital ethics

Read: How Good Design Failed Us” by Nikil Saval
When the Robot Doesn’t See Dark Skin” by Joy Buolamwini
A History of the Influencer, from Shakespeare to Instagram” by Laurence Scott


Tues, November 19 | Thurs, November 21:

Individual conferences (optional)

Tues, November 26 | Thurs, November 28:

NO CLASS (Thanksgiving Break)

[Portfolio due Sunday, December 1st]
Tues, December 3 | Thurs, December 5 | Tues, December 10:

Final Presentations. [Presentation Schedule]
Course Evaluations