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Detailed Course Information


Fall 2013
Mar 24, 2018
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Information Select the desired Level or Schedule Type to find available classes for the course.

THE HUMAN BODY IN ART (AND EVERYTHING ELSE)~"What spirit is so empty and blind, that it cannot recognize the fact that the foot is more noble than the shoe, and skin more beautiful that the garment with which it is clothed?" Michaelangelo "The human body is first and foremost a mirror to the soul and its greatest beauty comes from that." Auguste Rodin We live in them, feed them, bathe, adorn, perfume, entertain and otherwise glorify or defile them. But what do we really think about these manifestations in which the heart and (perhaps) soul of our very being resides?our bodies? Artists, such as the two quoted above, have explored and presented their responses to human bodies since 20,000 BCE, when the first known images were made?for example, the Famous Venus of Willendorf. This course will examine historical perspectives on the Human Body as translated into art objects. Such notions as ideal size, shape, color, proportion, and presentation, ownership, allure, and revulsion are all at one time or another attached to interpretations of the body in art. We will also explore other ways to look at and understand the body through a variety of textual sources. Consider the follow observations offered by varied thinkers: "Body: A thing of shreds and patches, borrowed unequally from good and bad ancestors and a misfit from the start." Ralph Waldo Emerson (Philosopher) "Our own physical body possesses a wisdom which we who inhabit the body lack. We give it orders which make no sense." Henry Miller (US Author) "The body of man is a machine which winds its own springs." J.O. De La Mettrie, (18th Century French Philosopher) L'Homme Machine "The church says: The body is a sin. Science says: The body is a machine. Advertising says: The body is a business. The body says: I am a fiesta." Eduardo Galeano (Latin American Author), "Windows on the World" "We sit at breakfast, we sit on the train on the way to work, we sit at lunch, we sit all afternoon, a hodgepodge of sagging livers, sinking gall bladders, drooping stomachs, compressed intestines, and squashed pelvic organs." John Button, Jr. MD
4.000 Credit hours

Levels: Undergraduate
Schedule Types: Lecture

Freshman Colloquium Department

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