Spring 2019

This course focuses on the artistic and cultural practices of modernism as it emerged south of the Rio Grande.  Starting from Garcia Canclini’s provocative definition of modernism before modernization, the course uses modern architecture as a departure point for investigating the political, social and economic factors as well as the artistic expression of what has been called "peripheral modernization" in the twentieth century. The course will focus especially on Brazil, but will also consider the cases of Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela, Uruguay and Colombia. Organized mostly around discussions and student presentations, the course requires students to analyze artistic and cultural manifestations of a variety of modernist movements. The first half of the course is devoted to the ideas behind the concepts of modernity, modernization and modernism, paying special attention to the ways these concepts and their periodization vary in different national contexts. The second half of the course uses Latin American Modern Architecture as a case study for exploring how these concepts were expressed through a specific artistic form.  Students will then produce an original final paper on a case study of their choice.
 

Syllabus

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