Fall 2021 - CA 210W D100

Artworks, Theories, Contexts (3)

Class Number: 7342

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 2:30 PM – 5:20 PM
    HCC 2510, Vancouver

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 15, 2021
    7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
    HCC 1800, Vancouver

  • Prerequisites:

    21 units including six in the history or theory of the fine or performing arts and CA (or FPA) 168.



Introduces theoretical concepts and historical issues that have informed the creation, perception, interpretation, and analysis of selected artworks in formative epochs, such as the Renaissance, Romanticism, Modernism, or Postmodernism. Students with credit for CA (or FPA 210) may not take this course for further credit. Writing.


Through a combination of lectures, films, readings and seminars this course introduces students to vocabulary and critical theories relating to the study of art and visual culture. We will consider such questions as: How does art interact with and inform social, cultural, political and economic aspects of human society? How do cultural institutions as museums and art galleries shape the ways in which images convey meaning? What types of theories exist to explain how audiences interpret and understand visual culture? In what ways can images reinforce or challenge dominant ideologies in society? Why are certain types of images privileged over others? Students will gain experience in contextual and visual analysis of images, as well as academic research and writing skills through assignments and workshops.


  • Attendance and participation 11%
  • Weekly reading responses 24%
  • Essay #1 15%
  • Essay #2 25%
  • Peer review assignment 5%
  • Final examination 20%



Weekly readings will be available as links on the course’s Canvas website.

Marita Sturken and Lisa Cartwright, Practices of Looking: An Introduction to Visual Culture, 3rd edition (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017).
Available on reserve at Belzberg (SFU Vancouver) library.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

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Teaching at SFU in fall 2021 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with approximately 70 to 80 per cent of classes in person/on campus, with safety plans in place.  Whether your course will be in-person or through remote methods will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the fall 2021 term.