nl en

Ancient sculpture in context


Compulsory attendance


Admission requirements

Admission to the Master of Archaeology programme.


This course will present students with the available evidence about the development of Greek and Roman architectural, dedicatory and sepulchral sculpture from Archaic to Hellenistic times.
The modes of analysis that are taught will lead to insights, obtained from statues and reliefs, about contemporary social, political and economic structures as well as the worldview of artists and viewers.
Various theoretical and methodological approaches will be discussed critically in class (e.g. object biography, gender studies) and today’s relevance of these artworks taken into account, such as their museum context, their attraction for modern day viewers and their economic value.

Course objectives

  • Learn and practice how to undertake a formal analysis of an ancient art form;

  • Ability to combine archaeological and iconographic sources in order to gain insights into various cultural structures and developments;

  • Ability to critically reassess the function of the approach within the methodological apparatus of the discipline.

Ects distribution

  • 14 hours of lecture;

  • 200 pages of literature;

  • 3 articles of 500 words each;

  • 2,000-3,000 word essay;

  • Museum visit.


Course schedule details can be found in the MA time schedule.

Mode of instruction

  • Lecture;

  • Individual tutorial.

Assessment method

  • 3 articles of 500 words each;

  • 2,000-3,000 word essay.

Assessment deadline

All assessment deadlines (exams, retakes, paper deadlines etc.) can be found in the examination schedule.

Reading list

  • A.A. Donohue, Greek Sculpture and the Problem of Description. Cambridge/New York: Cambridge University Press (2005);

  • M.D. Fullerton, Greek Art. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (2000);

  • N. Himmelmann-Wildschütz, Reading Greek Art. Essays. Princeton: Princeton University Press (1998);

  • J.M. Hurwit, The Athenian Acropolis. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (1992);

  • C. Sourvinou-Inwood, ‘Reading’ Greek Death: To the end of the classical period. Oxford: Oxford University Press (1999);

  • N. Spivey, Greek Art. London: Phaidon Press (1997);

  • A. Stewart, Art, Desire and the Body in Ancient Greece. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (1997);

  • J. Tanner, The Invention of Art History in Ancient Greece: Religion, Society and artistic Rationalisation. Cambridge/New York: Cambridge University Press (2006).


Register for this course via uSis.
Instructions for registration can be found in the uSis manual.

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Prospective students website for information on how to apply.

Contact information

For more information about this course, please contact mw. prof. dr. N. Sojc.