Presentation on theme: "Welcome to Objects as History 1 Fall 2013 Instructor: Michelle Fisher Wednesdays 12.10pm – 2.50pm August 28 – December 11, 2013."— Presentation transcript:
Welcome to Objects as History 1 Fall 2013 Instructor: Michelle Fisher Wednesdays 12.10pm – 2.50pm August 28 – December 11, 2013
Course Chronology: Prehistory to the Twentieth Century Course Themes: History, Civilization, Culture, Power, Politics, Religions, Economies, Societies, Individuals, Domestic Space ALL UNDERSTOOD THROUGH INVESTGATING OBJECTS YOU CAN SEE IN NEW YORK COLLECTIONS!
FIRST DAY ADMIN Introductions Index cards – Name, preferred email address, Intended Major, hometown, previous art history courses, Swap emails and interview a classmate; write your bios Read through course syllabus together; discuss assignments
Swap emails and interview a classmate: 1.What is your history? Who are you, where do you come from? How did you end up at Parsons? 2.What is history more generally? How would you define “history”? 3.What is the most important object in history you can think of? 4.What is the most important object that tells something about your own personal history? 5.What one extra thing should your partner know about you? Then - write a short bio introducing your classmate
Woman of Willendorf 11cm high Material: Oolitic limestone Created: 24,000 B.C.E – 22,000 B.C.E. Discovered in 1908 near Willendorf, by Josef Szombathy Present location: Naturhistorisches Museum, Vienna, Austria
BC = Before Christ AD = Anno Domini (the year of our Lord) BCE = Before the Common Era CE = Common Era
What can these objects tell us about very early history?
Woman from Willendorf. c. 24,000 BCE. Height 4 3/8”.
Valdivia female figurines, ca. 3,500 BCE, Museum of the American Indian
Woman from Dolní Vestonice. 23,000 BCE. 4 1/4 1 7/10”.
Woman from Brassempouy. Probably c. 30,000 BCE. Height 1 1/4”.
The First Tools and the invention of Writing (300,000 – 1,800 BCE)
What does the term “pre-history” refer to? Prehistory is a term that refers to all of human history that precedes the invention of writing systems, ca 3,100BC, and the keeping of written records, and it is an immensely long period of time, some ten million years according to current theories.
Paleolithic Hand-Axe. 60,000 years ago. Height 10”. Paleolithic From the Greek meaning: “paleo” = old “liithic” = stone Paleolithic lifestyle was a result of their relationship to nature. They were nomadic hunters, gatherers, and fishers; they did not produce their own food and they lived precariously as peoples completely dependent on their environment.
Neanderthal Tools, 300,000 BCE What can early tools tell us?
Neil MacGregor’s Olduvai Stone Tool Lower Palaeolithic, about 1.2 million years old, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania The first great invention, this tool is called a handaxe. Handaxes were first made in Olduvai Gorge about 1.5 million years ago.
What can early tools tell us? Man could create functional objects that premeditated actions like hunting and building shelter – rather than just responding to immediate conditions with immediate reactions This planning meant that man had a more developed brain – planning is a more evolved response! It also meant their relationship to the natural world slowly changed. In the Neolithic period of Prehistory, man started to settle, farm crops and animals, produce food surpluses, and remain in one place for much longer than their Paleolithic forefathers. They did this by using objects like these tools. They did this when they learned how to make these objects.
What can early writing tell us? Course Readings
Spotted Horses and Human Hands. Peche-Merle Cave, France. Horses 25,000– 24,000 BCE; hands c. 15,000 BCE. Individual horses over 5’ in length.