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Sociocultural studies course: art history

Cultivating students who contribute to sociocultural formation through investigation and analysis of the dynamics of modern society with fieldwork as a primary research method, elucidating within an international framework the various issues of present-day society as well as those which surround the transformation of specific local or model cultures, from a perspective that highlights the interrelation between social structure and cultural form.

About the Program

Art history is a discipline that deals with the entire category of visual, as opposed to written, material (that is, images). Images, to a far greater extent than words, hold a rich array of messages within them, and through the close reading of these images we can begin to access some of the unexpected truths that they hold, whether the ideas of people in the past, or the hidden meanings of modern culture. In addition to the political, economic, ideological, and social context of the time in which the piece was made, we also think about how meaning has been applied to and changed up to the present day.

We examine various aspects of the diverse art forms that arise in different areas and time periods and from different groups of people, using a variety of methodologies to investigate the diffusion of styles, the transmission of iconography, and the transformation of meaning that comprise fundamental issues in art history. As such, we emphasise the importance of direct contact with a variety of works of art in our department, collaborating with both art galleries and museums and conducting practical education and research that emphasises on-the-ground learning. Furthermore, though our only full-time member of academic staff is Professor Miyashita, through coordination with Professors Iwai Tomoji and Taniguchi Kosei, as well as by inviting other distinguished Japanese art history specialists to be lecturers, we aim to create an environment in which our students can gain a systematic understanding of art history.

Academic Staff

Faculty Name Fields of Specialization
Professor Miyashita Kikuro Western art history, modern Japanese art history