Core GUH Course Spring 2019: The City Arts and Public Space

The City Arts and Public Space
CY PLAN 291 SEC 002 (CCN: 19865)
RHETORIC 240G SEC 001 (CCN: 26495)

Tuesdays 1-4pm
4 units

Taught by:
Teresa Caldeira, City & Regional Planning
Shannon Jackson, Rhetoric and Theater, Dance and Performance Studies

This theory and methods course examines a foundational set of readings in urban humanities. Required for the Graduate Certificate in Global Urban Humanities. For more, visit the Graduate Certificate Program page.

Local urban practices and artistic interventions are recreating public spaces in metropolises around the world. This graduate seminar draws from different methods across the humanities and environmental design to explore some of these interventions and to theorize about the public character of the transformations that they provoke. This course is part of an initiative that aims to connect different disciplines to produce new knowledge, methods, and pedagogies for the understanding of metropolises worldwide.

We will juxtapose different methodological and theoretical debates to address questions such as: how can we conceive of the public in cities connected globally by communication technologies? What are the spaces and mechanisms for contesting and reconfiguring these publics? What are the assumptions behind terms such as "global city," "megacity," and "world city"? How are cities branded, made into spectacles, and represented? What are the potentials and what are the limits of the "creative class" discourse in arts-based urban planning? How is civic inequality reproduced locally and transnationally? How do new urban practices and artistic interventions affect configurations of gender, race, and the representation of violence? How is precarity reproduced and aestheticized? These questions will be addressed through readings and the investigation of selected cases both in the Bay Area and internationally.

Throughout, students will be exposed to and critically consider different kinds of methodologies, including interview methods, observation, discourse analysis, formal analysis, archival research, and photography.

For more information, contact Profs. Teresa Caldeira and Shannon Jackson.