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ARTH 218

Cathedral and Court: Gothic Art

This course explores the spectacular visual culture of European society during the High and Late Middle Ages (roughly 12th-15th centuries). In this period the tremendous growth of cities and urban culture, along with economic expansion and social differentiation, created dynamic new forms of interaction between audiences and emerging genres of art.Through selected case studies of architecture, monumental sculpture, stained glass, reliquaries and altar pieces, illuminated manuscripts, luxury ivory carvings and other devotional images (including early graphic arts), students encounter medieval culture and society in all its dazzling diversity.Issues for investigation include: the rise of devotional art and lay spirituality; the impact of miracle tales, relic cults, pilgrimage and other forms of associational worship; the rise of the cult of the Virgin, Mary's role as heavenly intercessor, bridal mysticism and devotion to the Rosary; the culture of chivalry, the impact of the crusades and epic poetry; new forms of social violence, crime and punishment, as well as new models of sexuality and love.

Distribution Area Prerequisites Credits
Arts and Humanities 1 course