Faculty of Arts


Imaging the Renaissance


‘Imaging the Renaissance’ offers an examination of major topics within the society and culture of Europe between c. 1400 and c. 1700, especially as expressed in visual images.

The structure is thematic and the course will combine the differing approaches of historians and art historians to the Renaissance period, broadly defined. Topics include the Renaissance Court, Merchant Culture, Carnival, Food, Masculinities, Femininities, Witchcraft, and Death. Examples will be taken from Northern Europe and from Italy, drawing on the work of artists such as Bruegel, Holbein, Dürer, Mantegna, and Ghirlandaio.

Each topic will be discussed in two consecutive lectures. The first will provide historical background material and an introduction to historiographical issues surrounding the weekly theme. The second will focus on important artworks and their interpretation. This will be complemented by discussion of key images and readings on the topics in tutorials.

It is intended that students who complete Art History 225/325 successfully will:

Improve their knowledge of European society during the Renaissance period.

Gain familiarity with a number of significant visual representations of past societies and develop the skills to evaluate them effectively.

Engage with scholarship on an inter-disciplinary basis (especially through written assignments), learning to appreciate and adopt methodologies used both by historians and by art historians.

You can use this course to fulfil part of your major requirements for either Art History or History (but not both).

View the course syllabus

Availability 2019

Semester 2


Coordinator(s) Associate Professor Iain Buchanan
Lecturer(s) Dr Lindsay Diggelmann
Associate Professor Kim Phillips


Coursework and exam


ARTHIST 225: 15.0 points


15 points at Stage I in Art History and 30 points passed



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