University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Art

Postgraduate Course: Things: New Materialisms (ARTX11039)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course examines some of the prominent emerging theories associated with the new materialisms in the fields of material culture studies, philosophy and science studies. It concerns developments in theoretical practice that call into question the binarism and anthropocentrism of critical theory and the cultural turn. The new materialisms, in their different ways, speculate on how things are material, singular and/or entangled. They have radically redefined post-human politics, agency, corporeality, criticality, representation, and time.

Course description Through close readings, students will examine the work of some of the most important contemporary material cultural scholars on process, the non-human/human relations, ANT, thing theory and the non-modern before considering how they might apply the new materialisms within their own field, developing models that are relational, entangled, porous, co­ affective, autopoietic, embodied, vibrant....

Aims of the Course:
1. To examine the agency and porosity of things and objects.
2. To undertake a systematic analysis of the principal theories and discourses of the new materialism.
3. To practice and expand the transversal theories and discourses of new materialisms in relation to disparate fields of scholarship.

- Lecture Programme on Material Cultures

Indicative subjects:

1. Materialisms: ANT
2. Materialisms: 000
3. Materialisms: Speculations
4. Materialisms: Animism and Vitality
5. Things: Aesthetics
6. Things: http://www
7. Things: Biopolitics
8. Things: Nonmodern
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a highly developed command of visual and material literacy and an imaginative critical faculty.
  2. Successfully engage your peers in discussions that articulate the relationships between the new materialisms and related theories and discourses.
  3. Apply critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis to principle theories and discourses at the forefront of the new materialism and, in turn, apply this to related issues in your own field.
Reading List
- Barad, Karen. Posthumanist Performativity: Towards an Understanding of How Matter Comes to Matter, Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, Spring 2003, Vol. 28, No.3, p801-830.
- Barrett, Estelle and Bolt, Barbara. Carnal Knowledge: Towards a New Materialism Through the Arts, New York: IB Taurus, 2013.
- Bennet, Jane. Vibrant Matter: A political Ecology of Things, Durnham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010.
- Boggost, Ian. Alien Phenomenology: Or What it's like to be a Thing, University of Minnesota Press, 2012.
- Bryant, Levi. The Democracy of Objects, Open Humanities Press, 2011.
- Bryant, Levi. 'Politics and Speculative Realism', Speculations: A Journal of Speculative Realism IV, New York: Punctum, 2013.
- Cool, Diana and Frost, Samantha. New Materia/isms: Ontology, Agency and Politics, Durnham, NC: Duke University Press, 2010.
- Brown, Bill. "Thing Theory", Critical Inquiry, Vol. 28, No.1, Autumn 2011, p1-22.
- Deleuze, Gilles and Guattari, Felix. Thousand Plateaus. trans. Brian Massumi, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1987.
- Dolphijn, Rick and van der Tuin, Iris.(eds). New Materialism: Interviews & Cartographies, Open Humanities Press,2012.
- Harman, Graham. Tool-Being: Heidegger and the Metaphysics of
Objects, Open Court, 2002.
- Latour, Bruno. We Have Never Been Modern, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1993.
- Morton, Timothy. Realist Magic, Open Humanities Press, 2013.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills - By researching in groups and working towards common goals you will learn social skills and negotiating skills, understand accountability and appreciate alterity.

- You will learn extradisciplinary skills, an understanding how to gain an applied knowledge of disciplines that are relevant to your research by engaging with case studies of material cultures.

- You will learn a range of artwriting and publishing skills; working with IT, social and print media. These skills relate to the distribution of their work.
Keywordsmaterialism; animism; speculative realism; non-human; para­ humanities; actor-network theory; object
Course organiserDr Angela Mcclanahan
Tel: (0131 6)51 5885
Course secretaryMiss Jennifer Watson
Tel: (0131 6)51 5743
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information