History of Art

Director of undergraduate studies: Jacqueline Jungarthistory.yale.edu

Art history is the study of all forms of art, architecture, and visual culture in their social and historical contexts. The History of Art major can serve either as a general program in the humanities or as the groundwork for more specialized training. Unless otherwise indicated, all courses in History of Art are open to all students in Yale College.

Course Numbering

100-level courses are broad introductory surveys that address basic art history from a number of regional and thematic perspectives. Prospective majors are encouraged to take the surveys as early in their course of study as possible. Under certain circumstances, students who have taken the Advanced Placement test in art history may earn acceleration credit and, in consultation with the director of undergraduate studies (DUS), may place out of one required 100-level course.

Intermediate and advanced courses, numbered above 200, encompass more specialized surveys and themes in art history. 

Requirements of the Major

Twelve term courses are required to complete the major: two introductory courses at the 100 level; four intermediate and advanced courses at the 200 and 300 levels; two seminars at the 400 level; a methods seminar, HSAR 401; two electives; and the senior essay, HSAR 499.

The major requires that the six intermediate and advanced courses must satisfy both a geographical and a chronological distribution requirement. These courses must be chosen from four geographical areas and four time periods. The geographical requirement is divided into five areas: Africa and the Pacific; the Americas; Asia and the Near East; Europe; and transregional. The chronological requirement is similarly divided into five segments: earliest times to 800; 800–1500; 1500–1800; 1800 to the present; and transchronological. A single course can fulfill both a geographical and a chronological requirement. Only classes originating in the History of Art department can fulfill the distribution requirements. 

Junior seminar The methods seminar HSAR 401, Critical Approaches to Art History, is a wide-ranging introduction to the practices of the art historian and the history of the discipline. It is to be taken during the fall or spring term of the junior year.

Credit/D/Fail courses Courses taken Credit/D/Fail may not be counted toward the requirements of the major.

Roadmap See the visual roadmap of the requirements.

Senior Requirement

The senior essay is a research paper written usually in one term in HSAR 499. Students choose their own topics, which may derive from research done in an earlier course. The essay is planned during the previous term in consultation with a qualified instructor and/or with the DUS. It is also possible to write a two-term senior essay; students wishing to do so must submit a petition to the DUS and the prospective adviser, normally by the first week after spring break of the junior year.

Advising

Electives may include courses from other departments if they have direct relevance to the major program of study. Approval of the DUS is required.

History of Art majors are urged to study foreign languages. Students considering graduate work should discuss with their advisers the appropriate language training for their field of interest.

Graduate courses Courses in the Graduate School are open to undergraduates with permission of the instructor and of the director of graduate studies. Course descriptions are available in the History of Art office in the Jeffrey H. Loria Center, 190 York St.

REQUIREMENTS OF THE MAJOR

Prerequisites None

Number of courses 12 term courses (incl senior req)

Specific courses required HSAR 401

Distribution of courses 2 courses at 100 level; 6 courses numbered above 200, 2 of which must be 400-level seminars, fulfilling distribution requirements in 4 geographical and 4 chronological categories; 2 electives

Substitution permitted With DUS permission, 2 electives from related depts

Senior requirement Senior essay (HSAR 499)

Art history is the study of all forms of art, architecture, and visual culture. The History of Art major can serve either as a general program in the humanities or as the groundwork for more specialized training.

Courses in the department are organized into three levels. Courses at the 100 level are broad introductory surveys that cover basic art history from a number of regional and thematic perspectives. Majors are required to take two survey courses and should consider taking them as early as possible. Courses at the 100 level are normally not prerequisites for higher-level courses in the department. Intermediate courses are numbered 200–399. Advanced or 400-level courses are seminars with limited enrollment. Students with AP credit should consult the director of undergraduate studies (DUS).

Representative 100-level courses include:

  • HSAR 110, Introduction to the History of Art: Global Decorative Arts
  • HSAR 176, Introduction to the History of Art: The Politics of Representation

Representative 200- and 300-level courses include:

  • HSAR 247, Art and Myth in Greek Antiquity
  • HSAR 266, Introduction to Islamic Architecture
  • HSAR 293, Baroque Rome: Painting, Sculpture, Architecture
  • HSAR 347, Feminism and Contemporary Art

Representative 400-level courses include:

FACULTY OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HISTORY OF ART

Professors Carol Armstrong, Tim Barringer, Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Milette Gaifman, Pamela Lee, Kobena Mercer, Kishwar Rizvi, Nicola Suthor, Mimi Yiengpruksawan

Associate Professors Marisa Bass, Craig Bradley, Molly Brunson (Slavic Languages and Literatures), Cecile Fromont, Jacqueline Jung, Jennifer Raab

Assistant Professors Joanna Fiduccia, Subhashini Kaligotla, Morgan Ng, Quincy Ngan

Lecturer Margaret Olin (Religious Studies, Judaic Studies, Divinity)