Design History and Theory is offered at introductory and advanced levels to students across design disciplines. The courses are designed to engage with and reflect upon emergent practices and discourses in contemporary design.
Introduction to Theory and History of Design I and II
These courses provide an introduction to design in cultural and academic context, providing a comprehensive conceptual foundation through which to analyse and critically evaluate the designed environment.
II: Morality and the Ideology of Things
What is the relationship between design objects and the quality of human life? This course investigates the cultural, ideological and moral values inscribed in everyday objects.
Design in a Social and Political Context
Design and / as Politics
How can we think about design as a tool for political and social activism? Responding to the ideas and research of invited speakers, this course examines the political dimension of design as well as the physical and visual designing of policy.
Theory and History of Design I and II
Drawing on literature and critical discussion, these courses enable students to explore new methods and approaches to scientific research in design.
II: A Matter of Life and Death
How can designers rethink survival strategies for economic, cultural and ecological survival in the midst of social, environmental and economic change? This course reflects upon the possibilities of design to address this question.
Material Culture II
Alison J. Clarke
with Eric Anderson PhD (Associate Professor, Department of Art History and Visual Culture, Rhode Island School of Design, Fulbright Grant, Freud Museum Vienna)
Design and Psychology: Form, Sense and Mind
Design has long relied on theories of the mind to endow spaces and objects with affective and therapeutic powers. This seminar explores ways that designers and theorists have understood human sensory perception, subjectivity, and emotion, and how this knowledge has shaped their work. Seminar readings and discussion might consider the private spaces of the home, in which psychological design frequently has been understood as a source of individual refuge and recuperation, as well as the public realms of the workplace and marketplace, in which sensory perception and emotion have been subject to imperatives of production and profit.
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