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Feminist Avant-Garde - HOA00057H

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  • Department: History of Art
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Teresa Kittler
  • Credit value: 40 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2022-23
    • See module specification for other years: 2021-22

Module summary

This course examines the relationship between feminism and art since the emergence of the Women’s Movement in the 1970s.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2022-23

Module aims

This course examines the relationship between feminism and art since the emergence of the Women’s Movement in the 1970s. The aim of this course is to consider the centrality of feminism within the development of many of the theoretical debates and artistic practices that emerged since the late 1960s, for example identity politics in art; expanded art practices; critiques of vision and representation, institutional critique; the backlash against poststructuralist critique in the 1990s; sexuality and performativity; and the contemporary affective engagement with the political past. Students will be introduced to a broad range of feminist art, and to the work of a number of important critical thinkers alongside feminist informed art historical writing. Throughout the course students will be encouraged to interrogate the category of gender as an organizing force, and the extent to which gender is intersected by race, class, and sexuality.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should have acquired:

  • Familiarity with a range of artistic and critical feminist practices
  • The ability to prepare and present a coherent, well-structured and suitably illustrated oral presentation to a group of peers, including the ability to convey not only information but a clearly mapped argument and to lead a group discussion.
  • Knowledge of a range of theoretical and art historical texts
  • The ability to think critically and carefully about the art studied from both a theoretical and historical perspective.


Task Length % of module mark
Assessed Essays: two 2,000 word essays
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Assessed Essays: two 2,000 word essays
N/A 100

Module feedback

You will receive feedback on assessed work within the timeframes set out by the University - please check the Guide to Assessment, Standards, Marking and Feedback for more information.

The purpose of feedback is to help you to improve your future work. If you do not understand your feedback or want to talk about your ideas further, you are warmly encouraged to meet your Supervisor during their Office Hours.

Indicative reading

  • Norma Broude & Mary D Garrard, “Introduction: Feminism and Art in the Twentieth Century” in The Power of Feminist Art: The American Movement of the 1970s, History and Impact, New York: Harry N. Abrams 1994, pp.10-29
  • Norma Broude & Mary D Garrard, Reclaiming female agency~: feminist art history after postmodernism (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005)
  • Helen Molesworth, Housework and Artwork, October, Vol. 92 (Spring, 2000), pp. 71-97
  • Laura Mulvey , Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema (1975) Screen 16.3 Autumn 1975 pp. 6-18
  • Wittig, Monique, Les Gue´rille`res (Paris, E´ditions de Minuit 1969)
  • Manifesto di Rivolta Femminile
  • Shulamith Fireston, The Dialectic of Sex: The Case for Feminist Revolution (London: Women's Press 1979)
  • Linda Nochlin, ‘Why have there been no great women artists’, 1971
  • Adrian Piper, ‘The Triple Negation of Colored Women Artists’, Next Generation: Southern Black Aesthetic, pp.15–22
  • Craig Owens, ‘The Discourse of Others: Feminists and Postmodernism’, in Hal Foster, , ed. The Anti-Aesthetic: Essays on Postmodern Culture (Seattle: Bay P, 1983)
  • Julia Kristeva, ‘Approaching Abjection’, Powers of Horror, Columbia University, 1982
  • Judith Butler, ‘Imitation and Gender Insubordination’, 1990
  • Gabriele Schor, Feminist Avant-Garde (The Sammlung Verbund Collection, Vienna, 2019)
  • Lucy Lippard, The pink glass swan: selected essays on feminist art (New York: Prestel, 1995)

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.