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2016/17 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

ARTF3057 The Frankfurt School and Critical Theory

20 creditsClass Size: 18

Module manager: Dr Barbara Engh
Email: b.engh@leeds.ac.uk

Taught: Semester 2 View Timetable

Year running 2016/17

Pre-requisite qualifications

At least 20 credits from any ARTF-coded module or appropriate equivalent in a relevant discipline. In the latter case, students are advised to get in touch with the module leader to discuss eligibility prior to enrolment

This module is approved as a discovery module

Module summary

This course will examine the key critical concepts developed by the Frankfurt School, one of the major critical movements of the 20th century whose concerns continue to agitate Cultural Studies today. Drawing upon readings from Adorno, Benjamin, Bloch, Kracauer, Luk√°cs and Marcuse, we will explore the issues of the structural transformation of society with the advent of commodity culture, the culture industry, the critique of rationality, the dialectic of the art work and of technology, and the concept of critique itself.In addition to developing an understanding of the historical and philosophical sociogenesis of the Frankfurt School, we will study the deployment of their critical concepts in relation to specific cultural practices, filmic, literary, and musical.

Objectives

On completion of this module students:
- will be familiar with the key critical concepts developed by the Frankfurt School;
- should have an understanding of the historical and philosophical genealogy of Critical Theory, and understand its relevance to contemporary cultural theory and analysis, with regard to both cultural critique in general and the analysis of specific cultural forms such as literature, film and music.

Learning outcomes
By the end of this module students will demonstrate an:
- Awareness of perspectives generated by and through Crtical Theory
- Ability to bring those perspectives and concerns to bear on the critical interpretation of a range of cultural artefacts and practices, both historical and contemporary.

Skills outcomes
- Verbal and written fluency in constructing a logical and coherent argument
- Use of audio visual aids
- Participation in group discussions
- Co-ordination and dissemination of a range of historical, contextual visual information
- Using bibliographies and databases.


Syllabus

This course will examine the key critical concepts developed by the Frankfurt School, one of the major critical movements of the 20th century whose concerns continue to agitate Cultural Studies today. Drawing upon readings from Adorno, Benjamin, Bloch, Habermas, Horkheimer, and Marcuse, we will explore the issues of the structural transformation of society with the advent of commodity culture, the culture industry, the critique of rationality, the dialectic of the art work and of technology, and the concept of critique itself.

In addition to developing an understanding of the historical and philosophical sociogenesis of the Frankfurt School, we will study the deployment of their critical concepts in relation to specific cultural practices, filmic, literary, and musical.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Seminar102.0020.00
Private study hours180.00
Total Contact hours20.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)200.00

Private study

- 150 hours reading and class preparation
- 30 hours essay preparation and writing.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

- Attendance at seminars/lectures - record of attendance kept;
- Contribution to class discussions.
- Midterm essay

Methods of assessment


Coursework
Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
Essay1500-2000 word midterm essay40.00
Essay1 x 3,000 word essay60.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Final essay handed in on level 3 standard submissions date

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 23/02/2017

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