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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : History of Art

Undergraduate Course: From Jacobitism to Romanticism: The (Re)invention of Scotland in Visual and Material Culture (HIAR10009)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryIn recent years, literary historians and to a lesser extent, art historians, have written of(f) aspects of Scottish culture as part of a 'myth' fabricated in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Perhaps most controversially for Scots, part of their national dress - the tartan kilt - has been (mis)understood as an English invention of the late eighteenth century. This course aims to get to grips with the peculiarities and particularities of these so-called 'romantic' myths of Scotland as they were (re)invented in visual and material form. It will go beyond the theoretical framework of Roland Barthes' Mythologies to reinstate their antiquity and also their much-neglected basis in reality. We will examine a number of paintings by distinguished alumni of the Scottish School, including works by Raeburn and Wilkie. But the course privileges a thematic approach to these Scottish artists and their painted output rather than a biographical one. Our timeframe will be hinged on key historical events in Scotland's history: from the 1715 and 1745 Jacobite rebellions, to the visit of George 4th to Edinburgh in 1822 and on into the later nineteenth century when the 'land of cakes and whisky', the 'region of mist and snow' became the favoured retreat of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. The visual and material culture generated in response to these historical events will be extended into that surrounding the literary phenomena that was the publication and illustration of Sir Walter Scott's poems and novels. Scott's many representations - in portraits, marble busts and sculptures and his monument in Princes Street - will be studied as part of the transformation of Scotland into 'Scott-land'. Key themes for this course include the relationship between Highland and Lowland culture as well as that between art history and material culture. Visits will be arranged to Sir Walter Scott's house, Abbotsford in the Borders.
Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: History of Art 2 (HIAR08012) OR ( Architectural History 2A (ARHI08002) AND Architectural History 2B (ARHI08003))
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2020/21, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  21
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Formative Assessment Hours 1, Summative Assessment Hours 24, Revision Session Hours 1, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 150 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 50 %, Coursework 50 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 1 24 hour online examination paper (50%) and 1 extended essay of 2,500 words(50%)
Feedback All students will participate in a compulsory feed-forward session towards the middle of the semester. The precise content of the exercise will be determined in advance.
At the end of the semester all students will have their essays returned with written feedback. They will be invited to a one-on-one meeting with the course tutor which will be timetabled after the last class.
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)24 hour online examination paper0:05
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Have detailed knowledge of two hundred years of visual and material culture in Scotland.
  2. Have tackled an ambitious secondary bibliography by academics from the discipline of art history and from other academic fields (e.g. literary history).
  3. Engage with a range of materials - all manner of objects, paintings, interiors and monuments.
  4. Use this accumulated knowledge to think critically and inventively about demolishing some of the cultural myths that surround Scotland. As such, they will have engaged with the conventional tools of the art historian, but in such a manner that encourages them to exploit critical theory, such as Barthes.
  5. Deconstruct notions of romanticism which could be said to plague the entire legacy of art history.
Reading List
Additional Information
Course URL
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserMs Georgia Vullinghs
Course secretaryMrs Sue Cavanagh
Tel: (0131 6)51 1460
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