Venice and Cultures of Consumption

Subject HIST20052 (2013)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2013.

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

This subject is not offered in 2013.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: This subject is taught in intensive mode on site in Venice from 22 November (departure date) (subject begins 25 November) to 20 December 2013: Seven 1-hour lectures, seven 1-hour tutorials, seven 3-hour site visits. Total class contact hours: 35 hours.
Total Time Commitment:

102 hours.




ITAL20006 or ITAL30012 Languages of Venice: Study Abroad

Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects:

Students who have completed HIST 30051 Venice and Cultures of Consumption are not permitted to enrol in this subject

Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Catherine Kovesi

Subject Overview:

This intensive four-week study abroad subject is taught on location in Venice. The Renaissance in Italy is regarded by many as the locus of the first consumer society in the western world. Venice was at the centre of the new commercial revolution and the trade and production of the luxury goods that were its staple. With a series of lectures, tutorials and detailed site visits, this subject examines Venice's position as a trading empire, and the goods traded, produced and consumed from luxurious textiles, printed books, art works, dyes and spices, to slaves and prostitutes. Venetian authorities were actively involved in regulating consumption with the passage of extensive sumptuary laws, the development of copyright, the application of duties and taxes, and a complex system of surveillance. Students will complete this subject with a deeper understanding of Venetian culture and society and its contribution to the globalised luxury trades; one of the key markers of the west and of modernity.


Students who complete this subject will

  • have a rounded picture of a particular past social and cultural context which has left a profound impact upon European culture of the succeeding centuries up to our own.
  • acquire an understanding of Italian culture and its contribution to understandings of modernity and the west.
  • gain intercultural skills: possess an understanding of a culture's complexity and respect for difference and diversity

A reflective journal of 1500 words 35% (due at the end of the intensive) and a research essay of 2500 words 65% (due Monday 24 February 2014).

Hurdle requirement: students must attend a minimum of 75% of tutorials/on site visits in order to pass this subject. Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per day; after five working days, no late assessment will be marked. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

A subject reader will be available.

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:

Students who complete this subject will

  • demonstrate research skills through competent use of the library and other information sources.
  • show critical thinking and analysis through recommended reading, essay writing and tutorial discussion, and by determining the strength of an argument.
  • demonstrate understanding of social, ethical and cultural contexts.
  • demonstrate international awareness and openness to the world.
  • show awareness of new aspects of Italian culture.
  • demonstrate skills in public speaking and confidence in self-expression through seminar participation and class presentations

Students are selected for this subject based on academic merit. The application process is available from the subject coordinator.

Itinerary and travel arrangements available from the subject coordinator in March 2013. The subject dates and HECS/course fee census date for this subject change each year. Check your enrolment records for the correct census date for this subject. Dates of travel: 22 November (departure date) (subject begins 25 November) to 20 December 2013.

Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Ancient, Medieval and Early Modern Studies Major
History Major

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