Selling yourself: 18th Century Art and Society (V4130B)

15 credits, Level 5

Spring teaching

This module considers the production of visual culture in the 18th century within its social contexts. Rather than simply looking at a list of artists, you will consider the visual arts against the backdrop of contemporary social and ideological issues: commerce and luxury, urbanization and the rise of industry, the impact of empire and colonialism.

The approach will be a thematic one, looking at topics such as the representation of labour, the image of the family, the cult of individualism, the representation of war, as well as the more conventional genres of portraiture, landscape or history painting. You will also relate the visual arts to 18th century literary culture: the rise of the novel, georgic and pastoral poetry, and developments in social philosophy.


100%: Seminar


70%: Coursework (Essay)
30%: Examination (Unseen examination)

Contact hours and workload

This module is 150 hours of work. This breaks down into 24 hours of contact time and 126 hours of independent study.

This module is running in the academic year 2019/20. We also plan to offer it in future academic years. It may become unavailable due to staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of such changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.