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Unit information: Art in Britain (Level I Lecture Response Unit) in 2021/22

Unit name Art in Britain (Level I Lecture Response Unit)
Unit code HART20024
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Mr. William Hamilton
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of History of Art (Historical Studies)
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

In recent decades there has been a renaissance in British art studies, turning an art-historical backwater into a hot-spot of academic debate. The unit draws on this recent wave of scholarship to examine the development of art in Britain, and its struggle to assert itself in the wider international art world. There is a vast amount of material that we could potentially explore. We will take as our starting point the careers of four artists who are central to the canon of British art, and whose work still sparks debate: Hogarth, Turner, Sickert and Riley. With each, we will go on to examine their reception across the history of British art. Which other artists did they influence? e.g. Hogarth/ Perry, Turner/ Eliasson, Sickert/ Freud, Riley/ Emin. How have later generations adapted or subverted the example of their work, and reinterpreted the themes and genres that they explored e.g. Hogarth and satirical theatre, Turner and landscape, Sickert and figurative realism, Riley and the body? Building through these four case-studies will be a larger discussion about the idea of a tradition of British art. Does it exist, and if so, what are its themes and preoccupations, and where might it be tending?

Intended Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit students will have developed: (1) a wider knowledge of the development of British Art; (2) the ability to analyse and generalise about the significance of developments in British art studies; (3) the ability to select pertinent evidence/data in order to illustrate/demonstrate more general issues and arguments; (4) the ability to identify a particular academic interpretation, evaluate it critically, and form an individual viewpoint.

Teaching Information

Classes will involve a combination of long- and short-form lectures, class discussion, investigative activities, and practical activities. Students will be expected to engage with readings and participate on a weekly basis. This will be further supported with drop-in sessions and self-directed exercises with tutor and peer feedback.

Assessment Information

One 2000-word essay (50%) (ILOs 1-4)

One timed assessment (50%) (ILOs 1,2-4)


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. HART20024).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.