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MACH Seminar Art and Gender


Admission requirements

No admission requirements. A background in visual studies would be helpful.


Gender and Art in Japan
For decades, art historians have regarded the art of Japan as a patriarchal tradition confirming an overall male identity of Japanese culture. But is it likely that women were not involved in creation and consumption of art at any stage of Japanese pre-modern history? Were women utterly indifferent to art or were they excluded from the sphere of art? Or maybe the masculine image of art in Japan is based on false presumptions, embedded in an Orientalistic agenda of modern art history? This course will explore art of Japan from a gender perspective focusing on women artists and women patrons – from ancient court ladies and Buddhist nuns till contemporary feminists. It will examine the role of gender difference in the production, consumption, and interpretation of works of art. The course will question an old stereotype presenting women in Japan as victims of Confucian tradition, which coerces women’s cultural inertia.

Course objectives

Student will develop:
1. a familiarity with a wide range of topics linked to socio-cultural context of Japan critical for the development of art by/for women.
2. a basic understanding of the issues related to feminist art history with particular focus on Japan.
3. an ability to critically read, assess, present and discuss academic texts related to the field, necessary for conducting independent research.


See timetable.

Mode of instruction

seminar (werkgroep), with lecture elements.

Course Load

5 ects=140 hours

Assessment method

  • participation element (presence and participation in class, oral presentation(s) (30%)

  • analytical element (written literature review) (20%)

  • research element (research paper in consultation with instructor) (30%)

  • summative element (postings) (20%).


Yes, see for more info Blackboard

Reading list



Registration through uSis. Not registered, means no permission to attend this course. See also the ‘Registrationprocedures for classes and examinations’ for registration deadlines and more information on how to register

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte via:

Registration Contractonderwijs via:


Dr.E. Machotka.


Language: English