Courses for Fall 2021

General Information About Courses

AAMW course numbers are crosslisted with departmentally based courses. Not all courses of relevance to AAMW students have AAMW numbers. Potentially relevant courses can be found in the rosters from the departments and programs in the History of Art, Ancient History, Anthropology, Classical Studies, History, Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Religious Studies, Architecture and Historic Preservation. In addition courses may be taken for Penn credit at Bryn Mawr and Princeton. Advanced students may also request to take a specialist course at other universities in commuting range. If the professor teaching the course agrees, the AAMW Graduate Chair will give the class a Penn Independent Study number, and transcribe the grade received.


Title Instructors Location Time Description Cross listings Fulfills Registration notes Syllabus Syllabus URL
AAMW 521-401 Mesopotamia 2200-1600 Bce Stephen J. Tinney
Holly Pittman
T 03:30 PM-06:30 PM This seminar style class will focus on two canonical periods of Mesopotamian history from 2100-1600 BCE. It is structured to examine fundamental institutions of kingship, religion, economy, law and literature. Practices well established in Sumer by the end of the third millennium evolved during the first half of the second millennium BCE when Amorite speaking peoples assume central roles in Mesopotamian institutions. The class will be structured around case studies engaging key monuments of art, architecture and literature. It will be team-taught by Prof. Pittman, focusing on material remains and visual arts and by Prof. Steve Tinney who brings expertise to the rich cuneiform textual traditions. ARTH524401, NELC502401, ANTH524401
AAMW 526-401 Material & Methods in Mediterranean Archaeology Lauren M Ristvet T 10:15 AM-01:15 PM This course is intended to provide an introduction to archaeological methods and theory in a Mediterranean context, focusing on the contemporary landscape. The class will cover work with museum collections (focusing on the holdings of the Penn Museum), field work and laboratory analysis in order to give students a diverse toolkit that they can later employ in their own original research. Each week, invited lecturers will address the class on different aspects of archaeological methodology in their own research, emphasizing specific themes that will be highlighted in readings and subsequent discussion. The course is divided into three sections: Method and Theory in Mediterranean Archaeology; Museum collections; and Decolonizing Mediterranean Archaeology. The course is designed for new AAMW graduate students, though other graduate students or advanced undergraduate students may participate with the permission of the instructor. ANTH506401, CLST526401 Undergraduates Need Permission
AAMW 529-401 Eco-Critical Approaches To Roman Ideas of Landscape Mantha Zarmakoupi R 10:15 AM-01:15 PM Topic varies from semester to semester. For the Fall 2021 semester, the topic will be: Eco-critical Approaches to Roman Ideas of Landscape. In the Roman period, landscape was singled out as a theme for the first time in Greco-Roman visual culture. Writers described it accurately in texts and treatises, its qualities were praised and sought out in everyday life, and images of the natural world permeated the public and private spheres. This attention to landscape found an architectural expression in Roman luxury villas. It is primarily in the luxurious country-house residences that ideas about landscape were fully explored and shaped. In designing for luxury, Romans engaged in a sophisticated interplay of architecture and landscape - an interplay that Renaissance architects discovered and reinvented, and which persists to this day. This course will analyze the architectural design and wall-painting decoration of Roman villas, the cultivated landscapes around them, and their literary representations in order to address the ways in which ideas about and the idealization of landscape contributed to the creation of a novel language of architecture and landscape architecture. And while Roman luxury villa architecture and decoration showcase sophisticated ideas about landscape, they silenced and beautified the dependence of their surrounding cultivated landscapes and agricultural estates on enslaved labor. Moving beyond post-Renaissance ideas of landscape and canonical considerations of Roman wall-painting, the course will adopt an eco-critical lens to shed light on the ideas and idealization of landscape that were shaped in this period. It will draw on a diverse body of evidence (archaeological, art historical, and literary) in order to prioritize perceptions of ecology, environment and human-nature relationships and uncover a broader relationship between architecture, landscape architecture and design. ARTH529401
AAMW 539-401 Archaeobotany Seminar Chantel E. White T 01:45 PM-04:45 PM In this course we will approach the relationship between plants and people from archaeological and anthropological perspectives in order to investigate diverse plant consumption, use, and management strategies. Topics will include: archaeological formation processes, archaeobotanical sampling and recovery, lab sorting and identification, quantification methods, and archaeobotany as a means of preserving cultural heritage. Students will learn both field procedures and laboratory methods of archaeobotany through a series of hands-on activities and lab-based experiments. The final research project will involve an original in-depth analysis and interpretation of archaeobotanical specimens. By the end of the course, students will feel comfortable reading and evaluating archaeobotanical literature and will have a solid understanding of how archaeobotanists interpret human activities of the past. CLST543401, NELC585401, ANTH533401 Undergraduates Need Permission
Contact Dept Or Instructor For Classrm Info
AAMW 562-401 Int Digital Archaeology Jason Herrmann MW 03:30 PM-05:00 PM Digital methodologies are an integral part of contemporary archaeological practice, and demand that archaeologists to hold a new set of skills and knowledge fundamentals. This course will expose students to a broad range of digital approaches through a review of relevant literature and through applied learning opportunities centered on a course project. The technological underpinnings, best practices, and influences on archaeological practice and theory will be discussed for each method covered in the course. Applied learning opportunities in digital data collection methods will include: aerial and satellite remote sensing, global navigation satellite system (GNSS) survey, 3D scanning methods, close-range photogrammetry, and near-surface geophysical prospection. Students will also have opportunities for practical experience in digital database design and management, geographic information science (GIS) and 3D modeling and visualization. Students will communicate the results of the course project in a digital story that will be presented at the end of the term. Prior archaeological classwork and/or experience preferred. CLST362401, CLST562401, NELC362401, ANTH362401, ANTH562401 An Academically Based Community Serv Course
AAMW 622-401 Art of Ancient Iran Holly Pittman TR 12:00 PM-01:30 PM This course offers a survey of ancient Iranian art and culture from the painted pottery cultures of the Neolithic era to the monuments of the Persian Empire. Particular emphasis is placed on the Early Bronze Age. ARTH222401, ARTH622401, NELC222401, NELC622401
AAMW 740-401 Medieval Art Now Ivan Drpic
Sarah M. Guerin
W 05:15 PM-08:15 PM Topics vary from semester to semester. For the Fall 2021 semester, the topic will be: Medieval Art Now. How has the field of medieval art history, here understood in the ecumenical sense to include the Byzantine and Islamicate worlds, changed since the 1990s and the methodological reorientations brought about by the so-called "new art history"? Indeed, what is happening in medieval art now? This graduate seminar will introduce students to the key developments and theoretical interventions that have shaped the field over the past twenty years. Topics will include: vision and visuality; materiality; thing theory; phenomenology; art's intersection with science; ecocriticism; the global turn; critical race theory; and the rise of the digital humanities. By critically engaging with some of the most invigorating recent scholarship, we will reflect on the state of medieval art history and consider what its future might or should look like. ARTH740401, RELS702401