HA3GO-Goya: Reason and Superstition in the Spanish Enlightenment

Module Provider: History
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Simon Lee

Email: s.lee@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
Francisco Goya (1746-1828) was the leading Spanish artist of the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. A pivotal figure in European art, Goya is sometimes called 'the last of the old masters and the first of the new'. His satires and war paintings gave a pointed commentary on Spanish society and on the occupation of Spain by Napoleon’s forces. This module examines the great variety of Goya’s productions in various media and seeks to place him in both a Spanish and European context.

This module aims to provide students with an overall understanding of the variety of work produced by Goya and enable them to examine critically the legends and myths of Goya's artistic persona, to interpret the satirical and political content of his work and to become familiar with the historiography surrounding him.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that students will be able to:

  • identify and explain the range and variety of Goya's artistic productions.
  • understand recent developments in Goya scholarship and demonstrate their own methodological skills by exposure to such specialist material.
  • understand the relationship between eighteenth and nineteenth century Spanish art and the politics and society of the period.
  • access and use information on the subject by their own research.
  • form arguments and opinions about the interpretation of Goya's major works and his artistic persona .
  • organize material into effective and detailed arguments in oral presentations, and timed examination papers

Additional outcomes:
With its requirement to present one seminar paper, this module encourages the development of oral communication skills. It also develops students' library research skills and IT skills by the use of relevant Web resources and databases.

Outline content:
This course covers the whole of Goya's output from his training in Aragon until his death in Bordeaux. His various areas of painting activity will be examined: religious art, the Tapestry Cartoons, themes of the supernatural and the carnivalesque, portraiture, history painting and his works of the imagination. The technique and content of his graphic work will also be considered, as will his critical reputation and the impact of recent scholarship on our view of his work. Goya began by working for the Bourbon court and ended by producing some of the most intensely personal works in Western art. This course will study the multi-faceted career of Goya and one class will also be devoted to the historiography of Goya and the construction of the many 'myths' that surrounded him.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
One two-hour seminar per week requiring preliminary reading and research. Group discussion, individual seminar presentations; and one revision class in the summer term. Normally at least one study visit to a relevant gallery or exhibition, either the National Gallery or the Ashmolean Museum Print Room, Oxford.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 18 2
External visits 4
Guided independent study 176
Total hours by term 194.00 6.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 60
Written assignment including essay 20
Oral assessment and presentation 20

Other information on summative assessment:
For Coursework, students give one assessed oral presentation, and then write this up in the form of an essay with full scholarly references and footnotes/ endnotes. There is no formal word limit, although most pieces of work are between 2,500-3,500 words long. The coursework mark is an average of the marks obtained for these two pieces of work.
The Examination consists of one three-hour paper requiring three questions to be answered from a choice of ten and taken as a Part 3 or Part 4 examination.

Formative assessment methods:
Students are requested to meet with the Module Convenor to discuss the content and scope of their presentations and to ensure that the textual and visual materials used are appropriate.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    One three hour written paper.

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall.

    Reassessment arrangements:
    Re-examination in September. Coursework to be submitted by 1 September if it carries an original mark of less than 40% and written examination.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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