NOTE: This was the syllabus for 2012. The 2017 syllabus is not yet available but will be quite similar.
The first week of the program will be held in the MSU Museum Conference Room, East Lansing (or by Skype) and will focus on developing a grounding in South African history, arts, and culture with discussions of some of the required course materials.
The two weeks in South Africa will consist of visits to museums, historical sites, galleries, arts education projects, and artists’ studios or workshops. The focus of these two weeks will be on visual arts and museology with continued discussions of required course materials.
PRINTABLE VERSION (COMING SOON)
Monday, June 10 – 9:00am-12:00pm
Introduction to course
Overview of South African history Begin discussion of Nelson Mandela, A Long Walk to Freedom. London: Abacus, 1995. Discuss the film Cry The Beloved Country
Tuesday, June 11 – 9:00am-12:00pm
Continued discussion of Nelson Mandela, A Long Walk to Freedom. London: Abacus, 1995. Discuss the film Invictus
Wednesday, June 12 – 9:00am-12:00pm
Discuss the novel The Life and Times of Michael K Discuss film Yesterday Discussion of AIDS and its impact on South African arts and culture
Thursday, June 13 – 9:00am-12:00pm
Discussion of “Introduction: Making History Memorable” and other readings TBA in Annie E. Coombes, History after Apartheid: Visual Culture and Public Memory in a Democratic South Africa. Durham/London: Duke University Press, 2003. View and discuss Youtube clips TBA
Friday, June 14 – 9:00am-12:00pm
Discussion of “Introduction: Imagining the Present” and other readings TBA in Sarah Nuttall and Cheryl‐Ann Michael (editors), Senses of Culture: South African Cultural Studies. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. View and discuss Youtube clips TBA
TO SOUTH AFRICA!
Saturday, June 15: Arrive in Johannesburg in the late evening/early Sunday morning
– Staying at The Space Guest House
Sunday, June 16: Johannesburg [Additional student arrivals in AM]
Themes and expectations for South African museum experiences
Monday, June 17: Johannesburg
Visit: [morning] CONSTITUTION HILL, CONSTITUTIONAL COURT and WOMEN’S PRISON MUSEUM where you will see both Barbara Hogan’s prison cell recreation AND the MSU Museum/Mandela Museum’s collaborative exhibition Dear Mrs Parks, Dear Mr Mandela: Children’s Letters, Global Lessons.
Discuss: Whose memories are recorded? Acknowledged? Celebrated? Whose are ignored or silenced? Who decides and how? What does this tell us about a community? Who has authority to tell a story? What happens when stories/memories conflict?
Visit: [afternoon] Visit to DAVID KRUT GALLERY and youth arts education project
Tuesday, June 18: Johannesburg
Visit: [morning] APARTHEID MUSEUM with introduction by Jacqui Masiza, Archivist/Researcher, Apartheid Museum
Discuss: How can museums help communities process their history, especially when it is marked by social and political conflict? What are the special challenges that museums face when attempting to tell the complex stories of a major period of a political struggle? What role does the private sector and public sector play in supporting such museum efforts?
Visit: [afternoon] Visit to ARTIST PROOF STUDIO, meet with Janet Watts, Manager, and visit any open galleries/studios at the BUS FACTORY (located in same building as Artist Proof Studio); Visit JOHANNESBURG ART GALLERY to view exhibition on Artist Proof Studio. Discuss: Role of printmaking in South Africa; compare with Impressions of South Africa, MoMA exhibition 2011; Trends in contemporary art in South Africa
Wednesday, June 19: Johannesburg
Visit: [morning] ORIGINS CENTER meeting with Brian Mogaki, Chief Tour Guide
Visit: [afternoon] WITS ART GALLERY AT UNIVERSITY OF WITWATERSRAND meeting with museum staff
Discuss: What different perspectives are represented within museums? Who makes decisions about collections and how they are presented? How can we decipher/analyze those perspectives? What makes art “traditional” or “contemporary”? What are examples of cultural expression that reflect the fusion of new and old traditions? What responsibilities does society have to support indigenous cultures?
Discuss: How does the historical role of the museum compare with contemporary functions? Connect to Sarafina: How do various art forms (music, theater, dance, visual arts, cultural arts, etc.) serve as avenues to memorialize and/or share stories about a particular community, moment in history, or current social issue? Visit: [afternoon] KLIPTOWN MUSEUM, WALTER SISULU FREEDOM SQUARE, and S.K.Y. Soweto Kliptown Youth Center with township tour led by S.K.Y. representative
Discuss: Overall reflections on Johannesburg, role of museums, impact of cultural heritage/art in society; connections to larger themes
Friday, June 21: Drive to Kruger National Park
– 5 1⁄2‐6 hour drive to Croc River Lodge
Saturday, June 22: Kruger National Park
Visit: Zebra, Giraffe, and Elephant and Sunset Drive Discuss: General observations about South African cultural heritage; Animal reports
Sunday, June 23: Travel Day from Kruger to Cape Town
– Staying at Centurian Apartments
Monday, June 24: Cape Town
Visit: [full day, weather permitting, departing on the 8:30 a.m. boat and returning at 4:00 p.m.] ROBBEN ISLAND MUSEUM ‐ Tour and presentations by Vanessa Mitchell, Education Department Program staff of Robben Island Museum Discuss: How do our own memories impact the story we want to tell? What stories resonate with each of us? How can we most effectively convey those to others? What kinds of information connects with different audiences? How do we make decisions about what information to share with visitors?
Tuesday, June 25: Cape Town
Visit: [morning] MONKEYBIZ and STREETWIRES– participate in a hands‐on Streetwires workshop Discuss: What are examples of cultural expression that reflect the fusion of new and old traditions? What role do arts and cultural heritage play in the transformation, stabilization, or revitalization of communities? How do arts impact or address contemporary issues such as AIDS?
Guest visit: [evening] Farzannah Badsha, community arts worker
Wednesday, June 26: Cape Town
Visit: [morning] DISTRICT SIX MUSEUM Guest presentations by Mandy Sanger, Head of Education
Discuss: How can museums help communities process their history, especially when it is marked by social and political conflict? What different perspectives are represented within museums? Who makes decisions about collections and how they are presented? What role does ‘renaming of places/sites” play in reclaiming identity? Whose memories are recorded? Acknowledged? Celebrated?
Thursday, June 27: Cape Town
Visit: [afternoon] SOUTH AFRICAN NATIONAL GALLERY Discuss: What is South African about South African art? What are some of the reoccurring themes in the work of the major artists of apartheid era and post‐apartheid South African art? What special opportunities and/or responsibilities do cultural institutions have to present multiple perspectives of diverse groups? What makes art “traditional” or “contemporary”? What are examples of cultural expression that reflect the fusion of new and old traditions? What responsibilities does society have to support indigenous cultures?
Friday, June 28: Cape Town
Visit: [morning OR afternoon] NEWLANDS CRICKET STADIUM Guest presentation by Dr. Andre Odendaal, Historian/CEO, Newlands Cricket Stadium [morning OR afternoon] IF NEEDED student meets up with their internship mentor so they get oriented for the following week
Sunday, June 30: Wrap up session and move to internship lodging
July 1 -August 2 Internships!
– Staying at: Housing to be determined.