KNOW courses are offered by the faculty of the Stevanovich Institute on the Formation of Knowledge at both the graduate and the advanced undergraduate levels. For graduate students, we offer a number of cross-listed seminars as well as an annual core sequence in topics in the formation of knowledge (KNOW 401, 402, 403). These seminars will be team-taught by faculty from different departments or schools and are open to all graduate students regardless of field of study. Graduate students who enroll in two quarters of this sequence are eligible to apply for the SIFK Dissertation Research Fellowships.
KNOW 27001: Image and Text in Mexican Codices
In most Mesoamerican languages, a single word describes the activities that we would call “writing” and “painting.” This seminar will investigate the interrelationships between image and text in Central Mexico both before and immediately after the introduction of alphabetic writing in the 16th century. We will also review art historical and archaeological evidence for the social conditions of textual and artistic production in Mexico, and how these traditions were transformed under Spanish colonial rule. We will consider the materiality of text and image by working with facsimiles of Mesoamerican books in the Special Collections of the Regenstein Library. At the end of the course, students will have acquired a basic literacy in Aztec and Mixtec writing systems, and will have refined their ability to look productively and write elegantly about art.
KNOW 23001: Aztecs and Romans: Antiquity in the Making of Modern Mexico
Modern Mexico stands in the shadow of two vibrant pre-modern urban societies: the Mexica (commonly known as the Aztecs) and the Romans. In this course, we will examine how Mesoamerican and Mediterranean antiquities overlapped and interacted in shaping the culture, politics and society of the area we call Mexico from the late colonial period to the 21st century. Topics will include: creole patriotism, the political thought of the early Mexican Republic and the Mexican Revolution of 1910, nationalist archaeology, indigenismo, mestizaje and neo-classical and neo-Aztec art and architecture. All readings will be in translation.