Ctr for Art, Society & Pub Pol (ASPP-UT)

ASPP-UT 2  The World Through Art Writing The Essay  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Students in the Tisch School of the Arts are required to take this course. The course follows Writing the Essay: Art and the World (EXPOS-UA 5) and provides advanced instruction in analyzing and interpreting written texts, art objects and performances; using written texts as evidence; developing ideas; and in writing persuasive essays. It stresses analysis, reflection, revision, and collaborative learning. The course is tailored for students in the Arts so that course readings and essay writing focus on issues that are pertinent to that discipline. Students are NOT permitted to add or switch sections after the first week of classes without EWP permission. To view syllabi visit the EWP website: http://www.nyu.edu/cas/ewp/index.html
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1000  Art & Public Policy All School Seminar:  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
In many political movements, the festive emerges as a major force shaping alternative social practices, forms of gathering, being together, and moving together. These alternative modes of being in collectivity are actively redefining the political. This sense of collectivity becomes particularly evident in the aesthetics of the Global South and its Diasporas. Consequently, this course explores the festive’s role in forming political movements beyond the traditional scope that reduces it to a simple byproduct of social life. It also explores how the pandemic has forced us to reimagine what coming together means. Taking Latin American and Caribbean aesthetics as an initial case, this seminar engages in a detailed interpretation of performances that challenge traditional definitions of both the festive and the political. A wide range of performance practices, such as carnival parties, sound systems, cabaret shows, popular dance styles, artworks, organized slave riots, and indigenous uprisings, shape the modes students will engage in theory and practice. For this course iteration, we will focus on questions around Black and Indigenous relations to carnival performance, structures of mutual aid as festive practice, and how they enact utopian modes of communal life, and how these modes of communal life redefine current understandings of art and politics. The class involves field trips, visits to several performance events, and conversations with artists and organizers who use the festive as a political tool to engage in political action in NYC. Questions regarding race, gender, and class will be directed to the philosophical, anthropological, and historical texts paying close attention to their involvement in the formation of colonial oppression. Performance studies’ methodologies will serve as the guiding mode to articulate these questions.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1001  All School Seminar  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
In many political movements, the festive emerges as a major force shaping alternative social practices, forms of gathering, being together, and moving together. These alternative modes of being in collectivity are actively redefining the political. This becomes particularly evident in the aesthetics of the Global South and its Diasporas. Consequently, the seminar explores the role of the festive in the formation of political movements beyond the traditional scope that reduces it to a simple byproduct of social life. Taking Latin American and Caribbean aesthetics as an initial case, this seminar engages in detailed interpretation of performances that challenge traditional definitions of both the festive and the political. A wide range of performance practices, such as carnival parties, sound systems, cabaret shows, popular dance styles, artworks, organized slave riots, and indigenous uprisings, shape the modes students will engage theory and practice. Questions regarding race, gender, and class will be directed to the philosophical, anthropological, and historical texts paying close attention to their involvement in the formation of colonial oppression. Performance studies' methodologies will serve as the guiding mode to articulate these questions. We will read texts by Denise Ferreira da Silva, Fred Moten, Achille Mbembe, Alexandra Vazquez, Ngugi Wa Thiong'o, José E. Muñoz, Laura Harris, Macarena Gómez-Barris, and Joshua Chambers-Letson in critical tension with authors such as Kant, Marx, Frazer, Hegel, Mauss, Rousseau, Lévi-Strauss, Benjamin, and Viveiros de Castro, among others. Attentiveness to festive performance will also allow students to learn basic compositional skills, focusing on the performer's presence and movement, through focused class exercises that will give them the chance to explore more organic transits between theory and practice.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1002  Art Artist & Social Change  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
4 points – will count toward general education requirements (Humanities) Social, political, and economic upheavals produce shattering transformations in human life, yet some of the most significant artistic works in literature, visual arts, theatre, film, and music have been created under these extreme circumstances. The focus of this course is on developing an interdisciplinary approach to an understanding of the arts, artists, and the artists’ response as a catalyst for social and political change. We will explore the history of various practical crises and examine how they have influenced art and artists. Some of the examples include the works of Czechoslovakian films during Soviet Occupation, Protest Theatre during Apartheid South Africa, Shostakovich’s Trio during Soviet Era, underground music scene in present day Iran, Cindy Sherman’s photography in the USA, Croatian artist Sanjan Ivekovic and Bangali writer Taslima Nasrin’s. We will also look at some examples of propaganda artists and their work as well, artists like Morteza Avini in Iran and Liu Wenxi of China. By investigating the artist’s understanding of political, social, and economic forces that impact upon art and their own lives we will examine this question: What are the complex dynamics that are involved in the emergence of movements in the arts?
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1003  Comics, Disability and Illness  (4 Credits)  
This course explores the use of comics and graphic novels to tell stories about disability and illness. Students will be introduced to both recent and historically significant comics about disability and illness. Our goals are to gain a deeper understanding of the interplay between image and text in sequential art, to explore and utilize the core elements of graphic novels (such as image and text, panels and pages, language and rhythm, character, plot, point of view), and develop the ability to critically analyze graphic novels that deal with complex and sometimes challenging subject matter. What are the ethical and methodological issues that arise when constructing sequential narratives of disability and illness? What are the comparative strengths and differences between such narratives that are autobiographical, documentary or fictional? Is there something unique about the format of graphic novels that enables artists to tell a different kind of story than filmmakers, musicians or performers? How do comic books circulate culturally, and how might this expand or limit their ability to inform our understandings of disability and illness? Wewill explore these questions through close readings, robust discussions and careful written analysis of well-known graphic novels by Ellen Forney, David Small and David. B, as well as comics by Kimiko Tobimatsu, Christian Ryan, Thersa Wong, Kristen Radtke, Mikaël Ross, Matt Freedman, Sarah Leavitt, Nate Powell, Takehiko Inoue, Laura Lee Gulledge and Peter Dunlap-Shohl.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1006  Special Topics:  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
In her book "The Unwomanly Face of War," journalist and Nobel prize winner Svetlana Alexievich questions the grandiose and male-centered manners historians have approached war. Alexievich's response to the omissions committed by such an attitude considers the senses in conjunction with the memories of women whose stories have been neglected, erased, and suppressed for being a menace to the status of this very grandiosity. In this class, we will follow a similar approach and interrogate the forms in which artists from war-affected regions and populations recuperate and redeem the traces, memories, lessons, and scars left by armed conflicts. In conjunction with this, we will critically read philosophical, historical, and other texts from the humanistic tradition to understand how war overflows, challenges, and redefine the theoretical understanding of violence, brutality, race, gender, sex, and the human. The class will also pay attention to how war and its traces remain in audio-visual archives, theater plays, choreographies, music, literature, and performance art. Some of the authors and artists we will pay attention to include Doris Salcedo, Claudia Rankine, Ngugi wa Thiong'o, Teresa Margolles, Svetlana Alexievich, Eiko & Koma, Nidia Góngora, An-My Lê, Joe Arroyo, Walter Benjamin, Francisco Goya, Ariella Azoulay, Robert Mosse, Arthur Jafa, Ariella Azoulay, John Akomfrah, and Raoul Peck.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1009  Writing the Artist Statement: Representing your Work for Funding and Beyond  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
In this course, you will develop the skills you need to write about your own work. A series of guided reading, research, and writing exercises will help you think about what your work is, what it means, and why it matters, so that you will be able to craft language that accurately and effectively represents you as an artist and thinker. We will study a variety of personal statements, project descriptions, manifestos, and other artist writings, examining them for their relative strengths and weaknesses with an eye towards gathering effective expressive strategies. You will use the writing you’ve generated in your assignments as the groundwork for several final artist statements that approach and represent your work from different perspectives. After we explore a variety of public and private sources of funding, fellowships, and residency opportunities in the US, you will identify several opportunities that would be appropriate for your work. You will then prepare applications for two opportunities of your choosing (three for graduate students). You will exit the course with writing that you might revise and reuse for many different purposes in your professional creative life. This course will count toward elective credit for undergraduate students.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1010  Art in/as Politics  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
This seminar aims to give students both a conceptual and practical grounding in the range of issues and approaches by which arts politics can be understood. The course will be framed by the following considerations: What are the institutional, discursive, and ideological contexts that shape the objects, images, sounds or texts we call “art?” What are the links between cultural spaces-- the museum, the movie-theater, the gallery, the music/dance hall, the bookstore, the fashion runway, the public street, television, cyber space-- and the larger realm of politics? And how do these relationships impact, implicitly or explicitly, the ways we create, curate, or study the arts? How do consumers play an active role in the reception of cultural products? What is the relation between formally promulgated cultural policy and the tacit knowledge that artists call upon to get their work into the world? What dimensions of the broader cultural terrain are made legible through artistic practice? What are the means through which art intervenes in the political arena? “Art” will be studied as a site of contested representations and visions, embedded in power formations-- themselves shaped by specific historical moments and geographical locations. Given contemporary global technologies, cultural practices will also be studied within the transnational transit of people and ideas. Such issues as the legal and constitutional dimensions of censorship, the social formation of taste, the consumption of stars, the bio-politics of the body, transnational copyrights law-- will all necessarily entail intersectional analyses incorporating the insights of critical race, postcolonial, feminist, queer, disability and ecological studies. We will read texts that offer theoretical formulations of key concepts and consider case studies that give us an opportunity to revise and/or extend these concepts. Students will also be invited to explore the questions raised in this class in the context of their own artistic and political practices.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1012  Artists, Social Change and the Role of Journalism  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
As the definitions of art activism continue to evolve and shift, how does journalism report, question, document, archive, and cull new language that thoughtfully and critically examines this intersection? This course explores the role and relationship of journalism to the field of arts and social change. Students will investigate several case studies of this brand of arts journalism in major publications. They will also examine the issues curated by OF NOTE magazine (the online magazine on art and activism), which illustrate how journalists have raised awareness for artists who are engaging with contemporary social justice issues such as mass incarceration, immigration, and women’s rights. A main objective of the course is to explore and define the relationship between scholarship, research, journalism and arts activism. Semester Project As a major component of the course throughout the semester, students will undertake a journalism project of their own and fully participate in the editorial process of creating an issue for OF NOTE magazine from start to finish. Students in the class will essentially work as an editorial team to conceive and carve out the editorial statement for the issue, select the artists to be featured, have opportunities for a byline by writing or co-writing a featured article, and serve as editors for their peers. Students will work towards the goal of launching the issue at the end of the semester.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1016  Law, Race, and the Humanities?  (4 Credits)  
This course examines the relationship between law and race, especially as it relates to the production of subjects and how they come to be managed. In addition to engaging case law in the construction and management of race, we will study how the humanities and arts have come to contend with this history. The larger point in doing so is to reflect on the theoretical, methodological, and political ramifications of humanistic discourse and cultural production in how they create specific visions and understandings of the law. As such, we will unpack a set of interlocking questions that ultimately highlight the stakes of placing law, culture, race, and institutional critique together: What notions of justice are achieved through artistic, cultural, and theoretical engagements with the law that exceed the law's capacity? What ideas of institutional critique can such engagements produce beyond merely being resistant to the law or “against” the institution? Most importantly, how does the legacy of liberalism overdetermine the very terms in which we understand these questions? This course will examine theorists like Saidiya Hartman, Jacques Derrida, Lisa Lowe, Janet Halley, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Robert Cover, and Cheryl Harris, amongst others.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1017  Queer & Disability Theory  (4 Credits)  
This course provides an overview of the field of disability studies as it intersects with feminist theory and queer of color critique. Our discussions will focus heavily on how disability functions in relation to notions of sexuality, gender, race, and class. The first part of the semester will review the field’s foundations, analyzing investments in the notion of disability from a variety of fields and approaches. In particular, we will trace the field's foundations in relation to first person memoir that have shifted towards questions around biopolitics, biopower, and populations. The second part of the course will give an introduction to some of the major directions within the field, such as the transnational/global, biopower, debilitation, neoliberalism, war, transgendered body, posthumanism, affect, invisible disabilities, animal studies, and technology. Although we will certainly engage the history of disability along with the lived experiences of real people, this course is not meant to provide a full historical overview of disability or of specific disabilities. Rather, this course is meant to analyze the emergence of the field, along with its past and developing concerns. We will engage texts and objects including but not limited to Mel Chen, Terry Galloway, Sins Invalid, Michel Foucault, Preciado, Eli Claire, Paul Longmore, Chris Bell, Robert McRuer, Sue Schweik, Susan Stryker, Jasbir Puar, Mara Mills, Georgina Kleege, and Anna Mollow.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1018  Contemporary Caribbean Art, Curatorial Practices and the Politics of Visibility  (4 Credits)  
Explores the current curatorial drive within and for the Caribbean. Critically examining the politics of visibility, the seminar addresses what goes into making Caribbean Art “visible” when facilitating a rethinking of the canon along more global lines, and breaking the silences and silos common to art practices in and about post-colonial spaces. Looking at select contemporary curatorial projects exhibited in the past ten years within the Caribbean as well as in the United States as “Case Studies,” the seminar will analyze how these projects have succeeded, advanced, failed, complicated and troubled the work of challenging stereotypical notions of Caribbean Art, while informing audiences about the region’s complexities, histories, and politics. The course will contextualize the cultural production of Caribbean Art against the background of generational movements of migration across the diaspora. As the course assignment, students will undertake a curatorial research project of their own and develop a proposal for an exhibition on Caribbean Art.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1019  Narrating Iraq  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Iraqi culture is in a unique state: its cultural production has gradually shifted from Iraq itself to a vast diaspora scattered across the globe, in the Middle- East, Europe, Australia and the Americas. A disproportionate number of Iraqis, about five million-- i.e. one sixth of the entire population— now live outside of Iraq’s borders, often in a stateless limbo. Out-of-place Iraqi intellectuals and artists have been attempting to represent their country’s ongoing devastation and fragmentation, amidst a precarious existence and rapidly shifting definitions of belonging. If Iraq is foundationally a composite of multiple ethnicities, religions, and dialects, cross-border dispersions have introduced new hyphenated identities and cultural syncretisms. This course seeks to offer a transnational framework to examine Iraqi culture(s) as embedded in a complex multi-directional itinerary, between “nation” and its diasporic geographies.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1020  Anatomy of Difference  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Prerequisite: One introductory film history/ criticism class. This course looks at how difference is constructed in film through reading assignments, short and full length features, and critical analysis of the visual form and content seen in mainstream Hollywood, independent, and international films. This inquiry takes note that while some of these films may be conventional in form, in content they challenge accepted notions of differences or stereotypes. Our goal is to catalog films and other media that resist accepted notions of the “other.” To accomplish our goals, we deal primarily with textual analysis that focuses on story and character, as well as cinematic space and time. With the help of articles and texts, we examine socially accepted notions of the “other” and see how they are derived and/or challenged in and by films, thus looking at how an art form can interact with socially accepted forms of “othering.” The objective of the course is to train emerging artists and scholars to engage in critical analysis that can make profound contributions to the individual’s unique creative or analytical process. Another intention of the course is to delineate and occupy the space left for debate between authorship as expressed from a directorial perspective from authorship from the spectator’s point of view.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1023  Art and/as Research Ways of Knowing  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
This class will concentrate on research methods of art making. It has been argued that creativity has seven stages: orientation, preparation, analysis, ideation, incubation, synthesis, and evaluation. Each of these steps will be explored and researched with complimentary writing assignments and individual or group creative problem solving exercises. These seven steps of creativity will be a platform to structure the class and hopefully come to understand the mystery of inspiration, originality and invention. We will examine other related theories such as trauma and creativity, spontaneity, chance, creativity as a voice for empowerment and the function of freedom and lack of freedom to heighten artistic movement. How are we inspired? Is there a method to our creativity? Can the creative process have a formula? How does research inform the creative process? The class will utilize the archives, galleries and libraries as a research tool and NYU as research University. We will visit the Fayles library, the Tainamont library, NYU Grey Art Gallery as well as visit with scholars and artists to consider the furthering of ideas into a series of stages to a final project and paper.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1025  Cultural Governance  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
The New York City Council of New York City approved legislation for the formation of a Cultural Plan. Given the cultural diversity of New York City that is reflected in a myriad of cultural art institutions addressing varied creative art forms what will be, should be the process of assuring cultural equity for historically marginalized communities and new immigrant communities? Examining the cultural policies of other cities in the United States, understanding the present cultural climate and resource distribution of New York City, processes of distribution and gathering the voice of varied communities students will be actively engaged in the formation of implementable procedures to recommend a possible cultural plan for New York City. Students will be actively involved in interviewing, organizing open forums, gathering the voices of the diverse cultural arts community in what could be a comprehensive New York City Cultural Plan?
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1028  Creative Response:  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Creative Response: Performance Matters. This is a dynamic, generative class that will be jubilant. We are creating and making. Although we are considering performance art, creatives or curators that work in related areas are invited that wish to expand their practice. Such as film, visual art, photography, creative writing, music, technology or if you just need to explore new ground! The professor is a multi- disciplinary artist who is active in the field. This is a workshop atmosphere and the professor strives to have an educational space for trying things out and discovering together. This class will look deeper into varying aspects of performance: concept, generating content, research and staging. We will consider the strategies of subversion of form, of interruption from normative expectations. We will consider everyday experience, randomness, abstraction and performance as a space for social change. We will create rituals, appreciate lists, timing, gathering and collecting. Performing, embodiment and communicating the body: gender, race and identity.  Recovery, restoration and healing is made possible. Awareness of work in progress, process, hybrid media or site-specific. Humor and absurdity is appreciated. We will have a workshop on how we translate our performance into performance writing. We will look at performance scores such as with Fluxus. How do we construct a text, script, be online and considering improvisation will be utilized. The visual and prop aspect of performing:  such as objects, accessories, the archive, design and costume. Listening, finding voice, silence and giving and taking commands, and deviation from dominant forms of entertainment and product.  Hopefully with deeper understanding, we will seek to challenge and stimulate our own creative content to produce innovative, thought-provoking performance.  Students will present their own work either individually or in groups, write about the theory and content of their production and have assigned readings to supplement the assignments and their areas of concentration. There will be guest artists, and we will attend performances and art events. Finley will update the description closer to the course with field trips. Plans for attending the exhibit Just Above Midtown at the Museum of Modern Art is planned for now. But in past classes we have attended Skirball,La Mama, the New Museum, The Grey Gallery, the Guggenheim and the Museum of Modern Art. We will also visit the archives at NYU.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1029  Conceptual Studio: COVID and Dystopia  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Conceptual Studio: COVID and Dystopia The border of an imagined state of a future dystopian landscape in upon us. Thinking of the rich contributions of utopian/dystopian narratives – where fact is stranger than fiction, we will consider our own dystopian world and how that functions to interpret policy, poetics and survival. We don’t have to go far from the new world order of the pandemic society for revelation. Building on themes of dystopia/utopia we will consider other portals such as alternative realities to reimagine and inspire resistant narratives. The language of the pandemic will be deepened, discovered and re-invented. Social distancing, loss, authority, humanity, control, surviving, grief, enclosure, isolation, infection, positive, anger, anxiety, and as a workshop collective -we will begin to express authentically our experience along with the unexplained. How do we find inspiration during this era of quarantine, masks, hot spots, infection, testing, positive, anti-bodies, isolation? Considering the artist as documenter of their times we will explore, research and consider historical examples of creative response and policy during times of crisis. Further inclusion with disability studies and ableism, both set against the questions of concepts around and access to healthcare. With the lens of recent and historical examples such as art activism and AIDS, anti-war, #Me2, immigration policy, and BLM movements we will begin to consider context, concept with our own practice and perspective. This class is to facilitate the development and awareness of concepts within our living history. With assignments, research, reflections, discussion and creative practice these undertakings will provide the impetus for deeper inspiration and theories in our artistic endeavors and scholarship. The professor will initiate concepts with readings and artistic examples. We will also consider artists and examine their themes and practices. Students are welcome from a variety of fields and disciplines. Guests working in the field will be vising the class with their research and experience. Students will create a final presentation and paper. In addition, this special all school seminar will be aligned with events hosted by the department of art and public policy which the class will attend.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1034  Female Cultural Rebels in Modern Times  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
This class considers intersectional feminism. The class will be a series of explorations of case studies, readings, events, artistic examples, and topics reflecting on cultural, social and political issues. Female Cultural Rebels his will be a space to further and deepen reflection while reimagining possibility, rebellion, resistance empowerment and expression. One part of this semester will be considering body agency. We will study and/ or meet with abortion activists such as from Thank God for Abortion, Shout Out Your Abortion and The Jane Collective, an underground abortion service from the 60's. We will monitor the recent protests in Iran and global response after the death of Mahsa Amini. We will hear from the producer of Disclosure, an eye-opening documentary on transgender depictions in film and television. We will hear from the Feminist Institute and the archive. And the drag queen story hour and recent censorship issues. We will also consider wellness, healing, spirituality, and emotions. We will examine archetypes, roles, the gaze, casting and gender stereotypes. Monsters, crones, hags, witches, the ingenue. We will also look at the rebelliousness of socially acceptable norms of being, acting out from gender expectations and going against dominant norms such as is Narcissister, Andrea Dworkin, Chantal Ackerman, Viva Ruiz, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, Annie Sprinkle, Cassils, Pamela Sneed, and Ana Mendieta. Readings, discussion, lectures, and guests will be part of the class structure. The class is given regular writing assignments and to present presentations. We will work solo but also in pairs and small groups. There will be a midterm presentation that can be a creative response with a companion essay. A final project of the student’s choice will be presented. In addition to the project or presentation a paper, artist statement and historical references will accompany the project. Of course, the choice and focus will be designed individually for the student. And can be in a research project, creative project that is focused with the student’s area of interest. The professor is a feminist artist activist who looks forward to working with you.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1044  Art and Law:  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Art and Law: Law, Performance, Parrhesia: Modes of Truth Production This course examines the methodological and political possibilities of analyzing law in relation to performance, the body, and critical theory. In placing these multiple modes of production in relation to one another, this class examines what it means to perform parrhesia, which Michel Foucault describes as speaking truth to power. We will thus examine what it means to produce truth in multiple registers, helping students develop more nuanced understandings of the relationship between law, culture, and the political. The class will explore the productive tensions that arise by placing legal and aesthetic approaches to social change together. Each section of the class is organized via different legal, “material” sites: Immigration; “War on Terror” / Guantanamo; HIV, Disability, & Sex Panics; Reproductive Rights; Intellectual Property, Gender, and Race; Anti-Discrimination Law: Title VII; Politics of Passing: Comparing Trans, Race, and Disability; Labor/Work – Then and Now; and Globalization & Neoliberalism. In examining how aesthetic production and the law respond to each of these material concerns, each section of our course will explore the dynamic intersections and differences in how politics (law, legislation, and policy) and culture (social protest, performance, and cultural production) approach such complex issues. Furthermore, in situating culture in relation to theory and legal cases, we will examine and destabilize the disciplinary boundaries around what we take/privilege to be fact, truth, ephemera, and merely interesting. What are the limits of the law and performance in describing and addressing bodily injury, pain, and power?
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1046  Arts & War Seminar:  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Art and War: Battle Lines of the Graphic Novel This course explores storytelling about war through the use of the graphic novel. Students will be introduced to both recent and historically significant comics about war. Our goal is to gain a deeper understanding of the interplay between image and text in sequential art, and the ability to critically analyze graphic novels that deal with challenging subject matter. What are the methodological and ethical issues that arise when constructing sequential narratives of war? What are the varying strengths between war narratives that are autobiographical, documentary or fictional? Is there something unique about the format of graphic novels that enables artists to tell a different kind of war story than filmmakers, musicians or performers? How do comic books circulate culturally, and how might this expand or limit their ability to inform our understandings of war? We will explore these questions through close readings, robust discussions and careful written analysis of well-known works by Art Spiegelman, Marjane Satrapi and Joe Sacco, as well as graphic novels by Keiji Nakazawa, Jason Lutes, Gipi, Emmanuel Guibert and others.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1048  Imagination and Change  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Artists and cultural workers have always engaged in critical, integral ways in advocacy, organization, resistance & re-imagining the world. Art, the imaginary, the engagement of culture; have informed, supported, translated, transformed, and uplifted movements for social change/ justice/rights. This is true throughout the world. In many places, it is understood and assumed that art and politics are intertwined and that art offers ways of understanding, connecting, dreaming, grieving, playing, and building that make even the idea of change possible, make existing conditions survivable. At the same time, when the story is told, or the “leaders” gather to challenge or make policy, artists and art in the broadest sense are still, often considered extra, even if valuable. And, where, in many places, artists have perhaps longer been recognized as central to social change, much has changed in the U.S. in the last 40 years regarding this question. New generations of activists integrate art and imagination into their work at every level, in breathtaking ways. This class will explore models of how artists and cultural workers have worked and continue to work in relation to movements, pressing social challenges, community and policy initiatives, envisioning possibility. We will study examples to understand creative forms of intervention, invention, invitation; looking also at how different initiatives emerged, were evaluated (if they were), what is to be learned, and ways of creative resistance and world building today. Students will be invited to develop a plan for a project that engages art in relation to a social, community, political reality with which they’re seeking to engage. This work will be based on a broad interpretation of the terms “art” and “politics,” opening the possibility for exploration of definitions, methodologies, and collaboration, border crossings and re shapings. We will read works by organizers, cultural workers, artists, dreamers, theorists and educators who’ve engaged in this wide field, and look at films, exhibitions and performances in relation to the work. This class is open to graduate students and undergraduate seniors and juniors with permission from the professor.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1049  Postcolonial Displacement: Memoir and Memory  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
With the growing numbers of immigrants/refugees in cities such as London, Paris, Berlin, Barcelona, New York, Los Angeles, Montreal, belonging no longer corresponds to one geography, simplistically imagined as “over there.” This seminar will study questions of displacement as represented, mediated and narrated in a wide variety of texts. It will focus especially on memoirs, whether in written or audiovisual form, which confront exclusionary and essentialist discourses with a rich cultural production that foregrounds a complex understanding of such issues as “home,” “homeland,” “exile,” “hybridity” and “minorities.” How are identity and history performed in these colonial, post­colonial and diasporic contexts? What is the status and significance of the oral, the visual and the performed within the context of memory? We will examine different narrative forms of memory­making, analyzing how post/colonial authors and media­makers perform “home,” “homeland,” “diaspora,” and “exile.” How does memory become a filter for constructing contemporary discourses of belonging, especially in the context of post­independence and transnational dislocations? We will also address questions of genre, and the socio­political ramifications of certain modes of writing and performances of memory that create new hybrid genres such as the poetic documentary and experimental autobiography. We will analyze works where a fractured temporality is reassembled to form a usable past where the body serves as an icon of migratory meanings. We will also examine contemporary cyber diasporic practices, problematizing such issues as “nostalgia” and “return” in the context of new communication technologies.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1050  Making Art Impacting Policy: Conversations on Racial, Art, Equity and Social Justice  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Innovative Cultural Advocacy Fellows reflect a cadre of young professionals in the field intent on shifting a paradigm of racial and cultural inequity to one of inclusion respecting the cultural and aesthetic values of global communities. The opportunity for students of NYU to engage in conversations with ICA fellows working within institutions that range in size, budgets and perspectives to address the challenges of creating a practice within arts institutions that are culturally grounded in the principles of racial and cultural equity.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1051  Contemporary Activist Art & The Public Sphere  (4 Credits)  
Women, Art & Activism in the 21 st Century explores the dynamic role of women artists and cultural workers globally, whose art tackles pressing gender, racial,economic justice and civil and human rights issues of our time. The artists, which we will delve into via case studies, demonstrate how women harness the power of the arts to inspire change and transformation. Examining key contemporary artistic and cultural movements across the globe, the course explores the ways in which women’s voices have gained newfound power and an emancipatory vision through the arts and through arts activism. The course will pay special attention to the impact of women’s work in the 21 st century, examining how women’s arts activism in particular geographic regions has thrived in the midst of political, racial and economic turmoil and has encouraged greater civic participation by women and girls.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1054  Art and The Public Sphere  (4 Credits)  
How can we direct our creative process and implement to challenge, inspire and disrupt the status quo? Can art be an intervention? This is an opportunity to expand strategies in creating cultural production. We will develop our art practice and its public. How do we envision a project and follow up on the various versions that are possible? We will consider purpose, research, process, and mission. What do we define a public sphere? How do we create an installation? How can we create a meaningful conceptual practice? How do we reimagine memorials? What is our research process? How do we consider an archive? How can our art transform society? Can we consider healing in our art? For creatives working in a variety of media – from video to performance, from object making to sound works, from movement and photography to poetics, you will find an environment that will be experimental and engaging. We will work solo but also in collaboration, create collectives and awaken cooperation. What is the community we are engaged in? What is the purpose, the humanity and message of our creativity? I will plan events for our class. We will visit archives, exhibitions, meet with artists, and create our own in class exhibitions. Finley will update the description as confirmed. We will consider appropriating other mediums. We will also consider public spaces such as nightlife, disco, joy, celebration, and processions. Other possible themes: Bridges, earthworks, protest, social practice, installations, interventions and disruption, borders and memorials, homages, silence, encounters, social and new media, and time-based art will be studied. I am a multidisciplinary artist and activist who looks forward to sharing and inspiring cultural production with you. And we will discover the energy of joy within our practice, being together with support and encouragement. Guest artists and field trips are part of the class. Selected historical, theoretical readings, artist writings and case studies accompany our studies. Please feel free to contact the professor with any questions karen.finley@nyu.edu
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1055  The Media of Displacemnt Postcolonial Culture  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
?We are here because you were there? has become a common slogan for postcolonial diasporas in the metropolitan ?centers? of the West. With the growing numbers of immigrants and refugees from the Middle East/North Africa in cities such as London, Paris, Berlin, New York, Los Angeles, Montreal, and Sao Paulo, the construction of ?us? versus ?them? can no longer correspond to one geography, simplistically imagined as ?over there.? This seminar will study questions of displacement as represented, mediated and narrated in diverse cultural realms, especially cinema, media, visual culture and writing. How such texts have confronted exclusionary and essentialist discourses with a rich cultural production that foregrounds a complex understanding of such issues as ?home,? ?homeland,? ?exile,? ?hybridity? and ?minorities.? We will look at the past few decades of artistic work within the larger context of post-independence and globalization politics. We will mainly examine the ways films/videos, novels, memoirs, and visual work have represented dislocations that have come in the wake of colonial partitions, and of regional, ethnic and religious conflicts; as well as into the ways they challenge traditional genres about immigration, transcending the neat divisions among the social documentary, the ethnographic media, the experimental autobiography, and the fictional narrative. We will also examine these texts in relation to contemporary cyber diasporic practices, problematizing especially such issues as ?nostalgia? and ?return? in the context of new communication technologies.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1057  Green World  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Green World is an exploration of contemporary environmental, political, and technological issues whose goal is to empower artists to create immediate informed catalytic works of long-term positive social change utilizing contemporary and traditional technologies. When possible, students will be matched with an industry adviser (proponent or opponent) to deepen their understanding of a specific subject of interest.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1060  Cultural Equity The Community Artsimperative  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
This course provides the opportunity for students to historically contextualize the growth of the community cultural arts movement grounded in the social and cultural equity activists movements that grew out of the Civil Rights Movement. The continuing mission and work of multidisciplinary community based cultural arts organizations challenge cultural and social inequities framing their creative work and organizational practices to assure equitable inclusion of the varying aesthetic criteria and expressions that reflect the multiethnic communities that are integral to the nations cultural identity. The first section of the course will take place in advocacy cultural arts community based organizations in the city. Community arts leaders in the field in collaboration with the class instructor will teach the course. This team teaching approach will afford students direct exposure and learning experiences with practitioners in the field within the communities they serve. In the second section of the course students will develop a project in collaboration with staff of one of the participating institutions. Students will have direct immersion within the community and the community organization understanding the operational and programmatic realities of the field as well as direct engagement in advocacy creative work. Students will be exposed to teaching strategies for working within communities that include readings, open discussions, as well as working on multidisciplinary collaborations in the field.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1066  Theater Matters  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
The theater as an art form was invented at the birth of democracy, and has always flourished when it interacts with social movements and issues that extend beyond the walls of the theater and past the moment of performance. This course examines the complex and exciting interaction between theater and the broader culture, and seeks to understand exciting molds of how it can interact with society. The first half of the course will focus on historical examples—from ancient Athens to Elizabethan England, from the Weimar Republic to America in the 30’s and 60’s. Through readings of plays, theoretical writings, and contemporary sources, we will study models of how theaters have reflected, impacted, and changed the world. The second half of the course will focus on contemporary examples of theater artists working to change their society. We will meet with artists, study film, see performances, read texts, and debate ferociously. This course will count toward general education requirements for TSOA students (Humanities).
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1067  Figuring Cultural Policy, Figuring Cultural Diplomacy in a Global Age  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
4 points – will count toward general education requirements (Social Science) We live in a world of nations and migrants between nations. Both are sources of cultural policy. This course will examine both the national frameworks within which people create cultural expressions and the disaporic experience through which they maintain a relation between worlds. For example, what does it mean for a Chinese artist to live and work in France while maintaining their Chinese roots and sensibilities? We will examine intercultural perspectives and representations as they bear upon global and international for artistic work. We will also consider the meanings of global spectatorship in light of technological forms and mediations of particular cultural experiences. How do meanings change across these contexts and who decides or judges what is considered to be of greatest value? What role do international art markets play in how artists pursue their own creative process and professional opportunities? What kinds of art are considered suitable for international audiences, what are the political and cultural expectations for these forms? We will consider the ways in which such economic, cultural and esthetic questions figure in the shaping and articulation of cultural policy. How do the kinds of media and information that artists have access to shape the way in which they craft their own artistic responses and pursuits.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1070  Language as Action:  (4 Credits)  
Typically offered occasionally  
Every few years, generally in times of great public strife, articles appear in major media outlets referring to an increase in people turning to and sharing poetry to cope, soothe, understand conditions, and connect across borders and differences. A field of writing, teaching and research has developed studying the powers of poetry to sustain individuals and communities, foster communication, and imagine worlds. Gregory Orr’s “Poetry As Survival,” James Crews’ “Poetry as Resilience” seminars and the anthologies he’s edited including “How to Love the World” and “The Path to Kindness: Poems of Connection and Joy,” Ross Gay’s acclaimed “The Book of Delights,” are only a few of the numerous works that have emerged directly or more broadly inviting readers (and writers) to engage poetry in the context of nurturing community, communication and offering tools for better understanding the world. A plethora of workshops and retreats exist grounded in the belief that poetry serves these purposes. Poet and wellness practitioner Dr. LeConté Dill, Associate Professor at Michigan State University, African American and African Studies, and Associate Editor of Health Promotion Practice’s new section “Poetry for the Public’s Health,” is among a group of scholars working to integrate poetry and other art forms into curricula and program initiatives focusing on health and resilience. This course will explore works of poetry and poetic projects that, broadly defined, support survival and beyond that, thrival. Students will engage in close reading and discuss the texts as literature as well as the ways the works are supportive of individual and social wellbeing. Students will write regularly and share their writing with the class.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1076  Feminist Practices in the Americas  (4 Credits)  
This course will offer neither a linear, developmental history nor a comprehensive survey of feminism but a look at various dissident creative practices--sometimes disjunctive, sometimes conflicting, sometimes interlinked--from a range of contexts in the Americas. The focus will be primarily on practices that resist the modes of gendering and the gender-based relations of domination that underpin settler colonialism, racial capitalism and cis-heteropatriarchy and by defending and/or inventing alternative ways of life. We will think about the social and aesthetic aspects of the various forms such practices take, including writing, image-making and performing, but also organizing, assembling, caring, etc. and what those forms make possible. The practices we consider can and will necessarily expand beyond the geographical frame loosely specified here to account for transnational or inter-local connections. Students will also contribute to a collective archive of feminist practices in order to further elaborate our sense of what feminism might be or do.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 1077  Marxism and In/Humanism: Race, Queerness, and the Aesthetic  (4 Credits)  
Following ongoing critiques of liberal humanism from critical race, Afro-pessimist, transnational, queer, and feminist studies, what alternative political projects or visions might now inform our practices and work? What should follow after we question the grounds of modernity, liberalism, and materialism? This class seeks to examine one critical possibility: Marxism, particularly Marxist humanism. Although we will define this political project, we will also question its limits. The legacy of humanism in both liberalism and Marxism becomes a problem when placed alongside recent critiques around the subhuman and inhuman. In particular, what is the figure of the human for Marxist humanism? And how does such a figure sit with and/or against the liberal subject, person, and Man that has come under critique by queer inhumanism (with a focus on objects, animals, and environmental relations), along with the larger ontological turn coming from Black studies, Afro-pessimism, trans and queer theories, and new materialism? This class examines 1) differing notions of the human and subject as informed by liberalism and Marxist humanism, 2) the political limits and possibilities of Marxist humanism, and 3) the history and the continued mediation of Marxism alongside discourses of race, the transnational, disability, queerness, sexuality, and gender. In addition, we will situate how the aesthetic has engaged these larger questions. This course will examine theorists like Sylvia Wynter, Raya Dunayevskaya, Cedric Robinson, Silvia Federici, CLR James, Jacques Derrida, Stuart Hall, Shu-mei Shih, Fredric Jameson, Mario Mieli, and Petrus Liu, amongst others.
Grading: Ugrd Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No  
ASPP-UT 2018  Contemporary Caribbean Art, Curatorial Practices and the Politics of Visibility  (4 Credits)  
Explores the current curatorial drive within and for the Caribbean. Critically examining the politics of visibility, the seminar addresses what goes into making Caribbean Art “visible” when facilitating a rethinking of the canon along more global lines, and breaking the silences and silos common to art practices in and about post-colonial spaces. Looking at select contemporary curatorial projects exhibited in the past ten years within the Caribbean as well as in the United States as “Case Studies,” the seminar will analyze how these projects have succeeded, advanced, failed, complicated and troubled the work of challenging stereotypical notions of Caribbean Art, while informing audiences about the region’s complexities, histories, and politics. The course will contextualize the cultural production of Caribbean Art against the background of generational movements of migration across the diaspora. As the course assignment, students will undertake a curatorial research project of their own and develop a proposal for an exhibition on Caribbean Art.
Grading: Grad Tisch Graded  
Repeatable for additional credit: No