Visual and Material Culture: Course

Art and Desire: A Critical Perspective

Ronel Yoav, Dr., Semester 2, Sunday, 16:30-18:00
The course will deal with representations of desire in western culture, through 20th century critical theory. The discussion will approach the term through its different meanings: erotic and physical desire, philosophical desire, political desire - but mainly while focusing upon questions of desire and the creation of a work of art.The course will offer different sites of critical cultural theory: It will begin with Plato’s thought of desire, and then move on to modernism and postmodernism. Moving through modern thought’s forefathers, Freud, Marx and Nietzsche, and onto 20th century’s critical thought: Lacan’s lost desire; Maurice Blanchot concept of the work of art; Walter Benjamin’s melancholic though; Michel Foucault’s discourse and subject; Jacques Derrida’s and Judith Butler’s performative desire; Eva Illuz and modern desire;, Deleuze and Guattary’s machine of desire; and postmodern question of desire and authenticity. The philosophical and critical discourse will take place in light of various works of art and culture. Amongst the artists, thinkers and writers: Kafka, Berdichevsky, Melville, Zohar Argov, Spike Jonez, Pasolini, Flaubert, Etgar Keret, Scott Fitzgerald, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Bruce Springsteen, Frank Miller, Gavriel Belhasan and others