Fall 2018 (un)common arts

These courses are discussion oriented, seminar courses centered on a performance or exhibit. All of these courses are one credit.

Please use the UF Schedule of Courses to find times, places, and other course information.

(un)common arts courses

CourseClass NumberTitleSectInstructorSyllabus
IDH2930 18207 What Makes a Monster? 204F Stoyan-Rosenzweig, Nina   
IDH3931  18219 Political Satire/Capitol Steps  2H82 Kevin Baron   
IDH3931 18255 The World to Come: Images of Climate Change 2113 Harpold, Terry   
IDH2930 18326 Petty: The Biography 2196 Clavert, Clay  
IDH2930 18320 The Art of Pop Up: The Magical World of Three-Dimensional Books   22C9 Komanski, Carolynn   
IDH2930 18377 Phoenix: Reading the "God Manga's" masterwork  22HG Smith, Christopher  
IDH3931 18254 Behind the Scenes: Producing a Musical-A National Tour 1H47 Cox, Matt  
IDH2930 21840  Experiencing Hamlet As an Actor 3D77 Homan, Sidney  

Political Satire/Capitol Steps

Political comedy and satire have been viable forms of communication for centuries, providing an outlet for transmitting political commentary and opinion in both flattering and unflattering ways. In the contemporary era, there has been a rise in the use of political comedy on television, but there are numerous other outlets where satire and comedy shed light on political realities. Political cartoons, stand-up comedians, blogs and websites, social media and memes, and music or other live-art performances have the power to convey information, form or shape opinions, and even influence or motivate political participation.

The purpose of this course will be to explore the connections between comedy and satire, and politics. As American politics have become more hyper-partisan and bitter, it would seem that political comedy has increased in attention, becoming more popular. This course will function seminar-style, using historical and contemporary examples of political comedy and satire to drive conversation around the impacts that comedy has on politics directly, and indirectly by informing, influencing and motivating political behavior. Students will be assigned readings, videos, and other multi-media or web-based content to explore each week, and will meet for one hour a week to discuss and explore ideas and perspectives. In the aftermath of a bitter 2016 election and an upcoming midterm/Governor election, this course is a perfect time to observe how comedy is utilized. The last few weeks of the course, students will give a presentation based on the subject matter. Bonus is a performance with the Capitol Steps

The World to Come: Images of Climate Change

We live in an age of growing ecological instability. Climate change, accelerating environmental degradation, and mass extinction are reshaping the collective futures of humans and other living things of the Earth on a scale that is without precedent in the memories of our civilization and our species. As we enter this new phase of the Anthropocene, the geological epoch defined by human influence, our former habits of mind and body are increasingly incompatible with new situations on the ground, in the air, and under the water. But humans are by nature conservative and timorous; creating new habits is difficult for us, who find willful neglect, cynicism, and despair the easier solutions. In this course we will start with the fundamentally humanist conviction that how we prepare for and respond to the world to come, in practical terms, depends on how we may re-envision that world and our roles in it. Hopeful resolve to think and act differently, and the ability to do so, come to us first by way of the creative imagination.

Our model for this work of bearing witness and renewed insight will be a landmark art exhibition at UF’s Harn Museum of Art, “The World to Come” (September 18, 2018 – January 6, 2019) <http://www.harn.ufl.edu/worldtocome>. The exhibition, which features works by more than 45 contemporary international visual artists, will challenge us to discard assumptions about human privilege and mastery of nature, to rethink the bond of humans to non-human life, and to locate an openness, wonder, and curiosity that may lead to critical reflection, shared responsibility, and the possibility of a *planetary* humanism.

The course will meet once weekly in a classroom in the Harn and we will spend much of our time in the gallery discussing individual works in the exhibition. We will also meet with the exhibit’s curator and attend a two-day international symposium in mid-October featuring scholars, artists, and scientists whose research and teaching are focused on environmental crisis and the environmental imagination.

Behind the Scenes: Producing a Musical - A National Tour

“This course will take students behind the scenes to explore the business and the art of producing an American musical. Students will be introduced to theatre production and design, to the production management of a theatrical tour, and to backstage work at the Phillips Center for a national tour production of a musical, presented by University of Florida Performing Arts. Along the way, there will be opportunities to see how performing arts centers work, and to explore the changing meanings of a performing arts event.”