Face, Place, Race: Images of Australia

Subject 102-213 (2009)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2009. Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2009:

June, - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: This subject is taught intensively on 29, 30 June and 1, 2, 3, and 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, July with a daily 1.5 hour seminar or site visit.
Total Time Commitment: 3 contact hours/week , 5.5 additional hours/week. Total of 8.5 hours per week.
Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Student Support and Engagement Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Overview, Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support: http://services.unimelb.edu.au/disability


Prof Katherine Darian-Smith


Kate Darian-Smith


Subject Overview: This subject examines the role of visual images and exhibiting practices in the historical and contemporary development of Australian culture and identity. Themes of 'places', real and imagined: the city, the suburbs, the bush, the beach and the desert, and 'faces': Australian cultural icons and representations of masculinity, femininity, indigenous and 'ethnic' Australians, will be explored through the study of visual cultures, which range from traditional visual forms of painting and photography to media forms of film, and to historical and contemporary exhibitions of Australian history and culture, to the visual in everyday life. Students will familiarise themselves with analysis based on visual culture and exhibitions, and will have the opportunity to participate in off-site classes, eg. at the Melbourne Museum, the Art Gallery at Federation Square and the Shrine of Remembrance.
Assessment: Two 750 word exercises 30% (due during the teaching period), a 2500 word research essay 50% (due after completion of classes) and class presentation 10%. Students must complete all assignments and attend at least 75% of classes to be eligible for assessment.
Prescribed Texts: A subject reader will be available to purchase.
Recommended Texts: James Elkins, Visual Studies: A Skeptical Introduction (Routledge, 2003) Nicholas Mirzoeff, The Visual Culture Reader (Routledge, 1995) Anne-Marie Willis, Illusions of Identity: The Art of Nation (Hale & Iremonger, 1993) R.D.Haynes, Seeing the Centre: The Australian Desert in Literature, Art and Film (Cambridge University Press, 1998) Leone Huntsman, Sand in our Souls: The Beach in Australian History (Melbourne University Press, 2001) Chris McAuliffe, Art and Suburbia (Craftsman House, 1996) K. A. Marling, As Seen on TV: The Visual Culture of Everyday Life in the 1950s (Harvard University Press, 1994) Michael Meadows, Voices in the Wilderness : Images of Aboriginal People in the Australian Media (Greenwood Press, 2001).
Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be able to use visual evidence in critical thinking and analysis of complex issues;
  • develop the ability to research in depth primary materials of a visual nature relating to such issues;
  • be able to present their views orally in tutorial discussion, and to communicate their ideas intelligibly and economically through essay writing.
Notes: Strict enrolment deadlines apply to subjects taught during the Winter Recess. The subject dates and HECS/course fee census date for this subject change each year. Check your enrolment record for the correct census date for this subject.
Related Course(s): Bachelor of Arts(Media and Communications)
Diploma in Arts (Art History)
Diploma in Arts (Australian Studies)
Diploma in Arts (Gender Studies)
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Australian Studies
Australian Studies Major

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