Visual culture

A.Y. 2021/2022
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The aim of the course is to introduce the main methodologies of visual culture: the discipline will be defined and its history will be traced. In the second part, a thematic study will be developed. The course is fully consistent with the objectives of the Course of Studies, which aims to ensure the acquisition of solid knowledge in the fields of multimedia communication by anchoring them to a strengthening of the humanistic training of students.
Expected learning outcomes
By the end of the course, the student will have to have an adequate measure of Knowledge and Skills.
Knowledge: Acquire the technical-sector lexicon of the discipline; approach the most important problems discussed by historiography regarding the in-depth phenomenon in the second part.
Skills: To be able to approach visual culture with a critical attitude; to know how to interrogate and contextualize the materials of the visual culture investigated, through theoretical tools and in-depth historical investigations.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
Second semester
Lectures will be delivered remotely, in synchronous format, through Microsoft Teams. Lessons will be recorded and left available to students on the same platform until the date of the third exam session (July 2021).
On the course page on Ariel website, students will be able to find all the information on the lectures, possible changes to the programme and the related documents (bibliography etc) in case of lockdown.
Finally, in case it proves impossible to hold the exam face to face (as planned in the Syllabus), the exam will take place remotely, in ways which will be communicated on the course page on Ariel at the end of the course.
Course syllabus
After an introduction to visual culture, the course investigates the concept of "iconic panic" in relation to the sexualization of cinema and the emergence of pornography in Italy.
Prerequisites for admission
Knowledge of contemporary history.
Basic knowledge of the history of cinema.
Teaching methods
The topics of the course will be addressed making the use of slides and audio-video materials analyzed during the lessons. Students who do not attend the lessons (neither in the synchronous format nor in the recording format), must refer to the program for non-attending students.
Teaching Resources
Texts to be studied:
1) A book to be chosen between: W.J.T. Mitchell, Pictorial Turn. Saggi di cultura visuale, Raffaello Cortina, 2017; Michele Cometa, Cultura visuale, Raffaello Cortina, 2020.
2) A book to be chosen between: Lynn Hunt, La storia culturale nell'età globale, ETS 2010; Carlotta Sorba, Federico Mazzini, La svolta culturale. Come è cambiata la pratica storiografica, Laterza 2021.
3) Tomaso Subini, La via italiana alla pornografia. Cattolicesimo, sessualità e cinema (1948-1986), Le Monnier 2021.

Program in addition for non-attending students:
Angelo Pietro Desole, L'immagine oscena. Giurisprudenza della fotografia erotica nell'Italia del dopoguerra, Quinlan 2020.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists of an oral interview on the topics of the program and, for attending students, also on those addressed during the lessons in the classroom. The exam intends to verify in particular the critical and logical-argumentative abilities of the student.
The examination procedures for students with disabilities and / or with DSA must be agreed with the teacher.
International or Erasmus incoming students are invited to contact the teacher in a timely manner.
Unita' didattica A
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica B
Lessons: 20 hours