Courses

Spring 2021 MUSE Course Descriptions
MUSE 400/546: Radical Imaginaries: The Cultural Politics of Labor​ 
Maria Eugenia López-Garcia, Thursdays, 12:00pm-2:30pm CST, CRN: 44151 / 42068
This course examines the cultural production emerging from transnational labor migration circuits and the precarization of labor in the global economy. We will explore racialized and gendered regimes of visibility and representation in relation to various modes of labor and work and the emergence of cultural forms and expressions inspired by workers’ ways of laboring and living that contest and displace those regimes. By analyzing a variety of testimony, personal narrative, oral history, literature, film, visual and performance art, students will engage in a collective intellectual exercise to understand the role of culture in the formation of new political subjects, narratives, and radical imaginaries within the new labor movement that includes domestic workers, farmworkers, museum, and cultural workers, gig workers, sex workers, sanitation workers, and health care workers among others. 
 
MUSE 546 is for PhD students only. All other students interested in this course should register for MUSE 400.
 
 
MUSE 400/MUSE 546: Museums & Galleries in 20th and 21st Century Popular Culture
Dr. Lucy Mensah, Mondays, 12:00pm-2:30pm CST, CRN: 42065 / 42258
This course uses cultural theory to examine how popular culture has come to shape common perceptions of and public attitudes toward museums and galleries. With the aid of cinema, television, social media, literature, and art that spans the globe and two centuries, students will develop skills in analyzing representations of “the museum” and “the art gallery” as competing arguments over the symbolic value of cultural institutions and their reputations in public discourse.
 
MUSE 546 is for PhD students only. All other students interested in this course should register for MUSE 400.
  
 
MUSE 400: Worldview: Museums Addressing Social Issues Across the Globe
Anthony D. Stepter, Wednesdays, 11:00am-1:30pm CST, CRN: 44150
This course examines connections between Chicago and sites across the globe by exploring how museums and cultural institutions are addressing social issues. Through virtual visits to museums, guest lectures, Zoom/Skype sessions, and research, this course will make visible the ways that Chicago is connected to international issues including migration, immigration, emerging feminisms, anti-colonialism, racism/reparations, accessibility, technology, and labor.
 
 
MUSE 400/ 546: Publishing Fwd: Museums Journal 
Therese Quinn, Tuesdays, 11:00am-1:30pm CST, CRN: 44677 / 42069
This seminar focuses on the production of the sixth issue of Fwd: Museums, a journal produced by the Museum and Exhibition Studies Program, printed by Chicago’s Stepsister Press, and distributed through the Buddy Shop (hi-buddy.org) and other venues. Offering a platform for participating in and advancing the discourses of radical/critical museum studies and practice, Fwd: Museums Journal features student and solicited research, essays, interviews, book and exhibit reviews, artwork, poetry, critiques, rants and interventions. 

Meeting online and working independently, enrolled students read and discuss articles offering grounding in critical museum studies, identify key publication components, and participate in all aspects of the journal’s production: reviewing all submissions, selecting the art and texts for this issue, ordering the selections, communicating with contributors, reviewing refreshing the journal’s style guide, content-editing, making design choices and elements, writing elements (foreword, next year’s Call for Submissions, and more) and choosing the journal theme for 2022. Each student is named in the journal as a member of the publication team and receives a copy of the completed journal. The full Call for Submissions is posted at: https://fwdmuseumsjournal.weebly.com/in-transit-2021.html

 
This section of MUSE 546 is open to all graduate students. Undergraduates should register for the MUSE 400 section of this class.
 
 
MUSE 542: Exhibition Practices
Dr. Lucy Mensah, Wednesdays, 12:00pm-2:30pm CST, CRN:  42066
Core course in exhibition making history and practices. Exposure to the mechanics of preparing exhibitions in physical and virtual environments; exhibition planning, design, management, and marketing.
 
 
MUSE 544: Public Engagement in the New Normal
Jen Delos Reyes, Fridays, 12:00pm-2:30pm CST, CRN: 42067
What does public engagement mean in the time of Covid-19? How have engagement strategies evolved and adapted to new needs and constraints? Will this moment forever change how we interact with publics? This course will feature diverse guests who will share their experience of how their work in public engagement has changed in these times, and speculate on the future of programming.
 
**All courses listed on this page will be offered online for the Spring 2021 semester.**