From disabled bodies to idealized nudes, sodomites to racialized bodies, the human body was the object of artistic celebration and scientific scrutiny in the early modern period. This class draws upon methods from the history of medicine, literature, and performance studies to examine bodies both normative and non-normative. The Wangensteen Library archives serve as our “laboratory” in which we will explore representations of the human body from 1500-1800: beauty, nudes, pregnancy, disability, sexuality, and more. The course will culminate in a showcase of student research on an original topic of choice: a collaborative virtual exhibit on common and uncommon bodies.
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