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Visual Culture

Faculty at Penn State participate actively in the burgeoning field of Visual Culture. Our faculty engage issues of the relationship between texts and images in every historical field, from the medieval to the contemporary. The detailed list of areas of faculty specialization below demonstrates the richness of the department’s resources in historical fields, as well as our interest in graphic novels, digital media, film, and other popular media.

Recent Courses Involving Visual Culture

  • Authors and Artists
  • The Bloomsbury Group
  • Foundations of Science Studies
  • Introduction to Visual Culture
  • Graphic Fiction
  • Graphic Fiction, Illness, and Disability
  • Life in Pictures: the Graphic Novel
  • Literature, Medicine, and Culture
  • Literatures and Cultures of HIV/AIDS
  • Media Theory and Literature
  • Milton; Literature and the English Revolution
  • Victorian Poetry in Sight and Sound
  • Virginia Woolf

Graduate Faculty

Blogging, film, cartoons, graphic design

Queer film and aesthetics

Deleuze and the visual arts, film

Avant-Garde Movements, Surrealism and Dada, Film, Pulp Fiction

Feminist visual culture, visual art and performance, film, digital video culture

Modernist manifestoes, modernist aesthetics, visual representations of disability

Documentary film, visual literacies, popular imagery, visual representations of race

Post-print manuscript culture, paleography and the art of handwriting, book and manuscript production processes, reader marginalia, manuscript materials: pen, ink, and paper; Manuscript digitalization

Art in modern literature and poetry, communities of artists and authors, modernist art and design, modern periodicals, the aesthetics of Japanism, queer aesthetics

Comics Studies, medieval manuscripts

Continuities and discontinuities of political and film movements, conceptual art, critical visual literacy, theories of apparatus

Graduate Students

Documentary cinema ; 20th- and 21st century "world" cinema ; 20th- & 21st century visual art (American & European, incl. fin de siècle) ; protest art / leftist agitprop & propaganda ; Digital art