The School of Visual Arts Seeks a History Instructor

The Humanities and Sciences Department of the School of Visual Arts is looking for a graduate student or Ph.D. candidate to teach the following courses. 


All persons interested should send a cover letter and CV to Laurie Johenning at



History of Human Rights

Wednesday 12:10-3:00

Fall semester: 3 humanities and sciences credits

The evolution in the history of rights from 1789 to today will be examined in this course. Economic justice, racial equality, gender inclusion, environmental protection, privacy, immigration and reproductive rights will be among the issues addressed. We will explore the history of human rights activism from the Nuremberg trials to the formation of truth and reconciliation commissions and human rights grassroots organizations today. Through historical documents and documentary projects by contemporary journalists, visual artists and filmmakers, we will consider the intellectual and historical trajectory of human rights politics in different geographies. Works by and on Hannah Arendt, Martin Luther King Jr., Rigoberta Menchú, Nelson Mandela, Alfredo Jaar, Patricio Guzmán, Ernesto Sábato, Desmond Tutu, Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, Vandana Shiva and Joshua Oppenheimer will be included.




Latin American History

Thursday  3:20-6:10

Fall semester: 3 humanities and sciences credits

This course will introduce students to the major events, topics and protagonists in the history of Latin America from pre-Columbian times to the present. Writings by Columbus, Hernán Cortés, Sor Juana Inés, Simón Bolívar, José Martí, Che Guevara, Fidel Castro, Gloria Anzaldúa and Rigoberta Menchú will be analyzed and discussed through critical lenses. Connections to art and politics will enrich the narrative of Latin American history through a historical analysis of the political dimensions of culture (visual arts, cinema and literature) and ongoing social debates (human rights, immigration policies, drug wars, environmental crises). Issues of colonization, anti-colonialism and neocolonialism will be addressed and paired with current debates on U.S.-Latin American relations.




Philosophy, Arts and Revolution

Wednesday 3:20-6:10

One semester: 3 humanities and sciences credits

The radicalization of philosophy, politics and the arts during the 1960s will be explored in this course. Students will examine the connections between postwar theories of social conflict and the rise of radical movements across the world. Key philosophers we will study include Simone de Beauvoir, Albert Camus, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, Julia Kristeva, Luce Irigaray, Hélène Cisoux, Theodor Adorno, Max Horkheimer, Herbert Marcuse, Frantz Fanon, Aimé Césaire, Gilles Deleuze, Félix Guattari and Jacques Lacan. The artistic works of Tropicália, the Neo-Concrete Movement, Cinema Novo, Louise Bourgeois, Agnès Varda, Valie Export and Roberto Burle Marx will serve as aesthetic counterparts to our study of the selected philosophers and the radical movements inspired by their thoughts. Students will consider the relentless power of philosophy, art and militancy as critical antidotes to state repression and police brutality.




Peace and Nonviolent Militancy

Tuesday 12:10-3:00

Fall semester: 3 humanities and sciences credits

Instructor: TBA

This course will reflect on the transnational reception of nonviolent thinkers: Henry David Thoreau, Leo Tolstoy, Rosa Luxemburg, Mohandas Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Leonardo Boff, Adolfo Pérez Esquivel, Malala Yousafzai, Greta Thunberg, Angela Davis, Dolores Huerta, Aung San Suu Kyi, Wangechi Mutu, Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, Opal Tometi and Tarana Burke. We will examine the connections between justice and peace, nonviolence and reconciliation. By exploring the cultural, political and social influence of nonviolent movements on public opinion and governmental decision-making, students will study the myths and paradoxes of nonviolent revolutions and reflect on the limits of translating nonviolent theory into political practice. Can peace become a long-term condition in the lives of multicultural communities? Or is it a mere utopia limited by the unpredictable turns of human behavior and the international order of politics?

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