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ART H 201 A: Survey of Western Art-Ancient

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Meeting Time: 
MWF 2:30pm - 3:50pm
ART 003
Sarah Levin-Richardson

Syllabus Description:

Art History 201: Survey of Western Art-Ancient

Fall 2018

MWF 2:30-3:50pm

ART 003


Prof. Levin-Richardson (you can call me Professor Levin-Richardson, Professor L-R, or just Professor)

227 Denny Hall (enter through the main doors of Denny, pass the water fountain and elevators, and it’s the first office on the left)

Office Hours: MF 10:30-11:20am, and by appointment



This course surveys major achievements in architecture, sculpture, painting, and other arts in Europe, the Near East, and North Africa from prehistoric times to the reign of Constantine. There are no prerequisites.


Learning Objectives:

  • Be able to identify and discuss major works of ancient art
  • Be able to identify and discuss major concepts and vocabulary related to ancient art
  • Be able to situate ancient art within its geographic and cultural context
  • Be able to analyze how ancient visual representations both reflect and impact wider cultural trends
  • Explore the ways in which ancient art influences, and is influenced by, modern cultures


Learning Support

If you know of something that might impact your learning (travel schedule with UW teams, health or personal crisis, disability) please contact me as soon as possible, ideally at the beginning of the quarter, so that I can make appropriate accommodations. Below you can find further resources:

  • Disability Resources for Students:

    • If you have already established accommodations with Disability Resources for Students (DRS), please communicate your approved accommodations to me at your earliest convenience so we can discuss your needs in this course.
    • If you have not yet established services through DRS, but have a temporary health condition or permanent disability that requires accommodations (conditions include but not limited to; mental health, attention-related, learning, vision, hearing, physical or health impacts), you are welcome to contact DRS at 206-543-8924 or or DRS offers resources and coordinates reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities and/or temporary health conditions.  Reasonable accommodations are established through an interactive process between you, your instructor(s) and DRS.  It is the policy and practice of the University of Washington to create inclusive and accessible learning environments consistent with federal and state law.
  • UW Academic Support:
  • UW Counseling Center:


Required Readings:

The required text for this class is listed below and can be found in the U bookstore, as well as on and other sites. Please be sure to get the right edition of this textbook (check the ISBN numbers on what you purchase to make sure it matches those listed below). Other required readings can be found on the course canvas site. Each meeting in the schedule below has one or more readings to be read for that class session. On the second day of class, for example, please come to class having read pages 30-43 of the course textbook (which I refer to as Kleiner on the schedule). These readings are a starting point for in-class lecture and discussion, which often will expand upon the assigned readings and/or present new material. Thus, I strongly recommend careful reading of the assigned material as well as attending class.


Kleiner, Fred S. Gardner’s Art through the Ages: The Western Perspective, Volume I. 14th Edition. Wadsworth, 2013. [ISBN: 9781133950004]



  • Exam 1 (October 24 during class time; covers readings and lectures from September 26 through October 22): 30%
  • Exam 2 (November 16 during class time; covers readings and lectures from October 26 through November 14): 30%
  • Final Exam (Tuesday December 11 2:30-4:20pm; there will be a cumulative essay covering all readings and lectures; the other sections of the exam [map IDs, slide IDs, term IDs, short essays] cover only material from November 19 through December 7): 40%


Exams will cover material both from the assigned readings and from class; as such, it is very important to do the readings and to come to class. Exams will consist of map IDs, slide IDs, term IDs, and essay questions.


Your final course grade is calculated from these exams in the proportions given. Please prepare carefully for these exams, and please come see me in advance if you have any questions about how to best prepare. There is no extra credit.


The grading scale used in this class is as follows:




Percentage Earned 

Grade-Point Equivalent




































































0.7 [lowest passing grade]

59 and x < 59





Further Expectations:

  • In class

    • In order to maximize your learning potential and prevent distraction to others, I ask that you do not use cellphones in class, and use laptops only for note-taking purposes.
    • You are responsible for all materials assigned in the readings and covered in lectures. If you miss a class, it is your responsibility to get notes from a classmate.

      • The University of Washington prohibits the selling of notes online or through any other channels.
    • No audio or visual recording of class is permitted without my written authorization. If you would like to record the class, please stop by office hours to chat with me first.
    • No posting of course materials of any kind is permitted without my written authorization.
  • Getting in touch with each other
    • Please check your uw email daily; this is how I will communicate with you about pertinent information (such as when study guides are posted, or if class needs to be cancelled for some reason). You are responsible for all information disseminated over email and through the course website.
    • I hold office hours twice a week to be there for you! I am happy to chat with you about class (including any concerns you may have), study abroad opportunities, how to follow your interest in ancient art, etc. If you are anxious about exams, please come to office hours and we can discuss study strategies one-on-one. If you would like to chat but can’t make it to scheduled office hours, just email me and we can find a time to meet.
    • I am happy to answer questions over email, but please check the syllabus first to see whether the answer is there.
    • I will respond to emails by the end of the next working day (which means that if you email me on Friday afternoon, I may not respond until Monday afternoon).
  • Grading
    • Students are expected to adhere to ethical behavior in their work, including following guidelines posted for each exam concerning group work and plagiarism/cheating.
    • Make-up exams will be given only in the case of illness or emergency, or for university-approved events (athletics, etc.) that are cleared with me in advance.
    • I’d be happy to discuss any of your graded work with you, but I ask that you wait twenty-four hours after receiving your exam back in order to begin to process my feedback. After the twenty-four-hour period, please feel free to email me to set up a time to meet. Unfortunately, I cannot discuss grades over email.


Schedule of Topics and Required Readings:


Week 1: Introduction and Mesopotamia [divided by region]

Sept 26: Introduction

Sep 28: Mesopotamia: Sumer and Akkad

  • Kleiner 30-43


Week 2: Mesopotamia [divided by region]

Oct 1: Mesopotamia: Babylon and Assyria

  • Kleiner 43-48

Oct 3: NO CLASS [Prof. L-R at a conference]

Oct 5: NO CLASS [Prof. L-R at a conference]


Week 3: Mesopotamia [divided by region] and Egypt [divided by time period]

Oct 8: Mesopotamia: Persia

  • Kleiner 48-53

Oct 10: Egypt: Pre-dynastic and Old Kingdom Period

  • Kleiner 54-63

Oct 12: Egypt: Old and Middle Kingdom Period

  • Kleiner 64-68


Week 4: Egypt [divided by time period] and Aegean [divided by civilization]

Oct 15: Egypt: New Kingdom Period

  • Kleiner 69-80

Oct 17: Aegean: Minoans

  • Kleiner 84-95

Oct 19: Aegean: Mycenaeans

  • Kleiner 95-103


Week 5: Greece [divided by time period]

Oct 22: In-class review session for Exam 1

Oct 24: Exam 1 [covers readings and lectures from September 26 through October 22]

Oct 26: Greek Geometric and “Orientalizing” Periods; Greek Archaic Period (Statuary)

  • Kleiner 104-114


Week 6: Greece [divided by time period]

Oct 29: Polychromy and Classical Art

  • Talbot, Margaret. “The Myth of Whiteness in Classical Sculpture.” New Yorker. 29 October 2018.

Oct 31: Greek Archaic Period (Architecture and Sanctuaries; Painting)

  • Kleiner 114-123

Nov 2: Transition to Greek Classical Period (Architecture)

  • Kleiner 123-128


Week 7: Greece [divided by time period]

Nov 5: Greek Classical Period (The Acropolis)

  • Kleiner 133-141

Nov 7: Greek Classical Period (Sculpture and Painting) and Greek Late Classical Period

  • Kleiner 128-133, 142-153 [skip “Alexander the Great and Macedonian Court Art”, pp. 148-top of 151]

Nov 9: Greek Hellenistic Period

  • Kleiner 153-161


Week 8: Greece and its legacy

Nov 12: NO CLASS [Veterans’ Day]

Nov 14: The legacy of female nudity

  • Salomon, Nanette. 1997. “Making a World of Difference: Gender, Asymmetry, and the Greek Nude” in Naked Truths: Women, Sexuality and Gender in Classical Art and Archaeology. 197-219.

Nov 16: Exam 2 [covers readings and lectures from October 26 through November 14]


Week 9: Rome [by time period]

Nov 19: Roman Monarchy

  • Kleiner 164-177

Nov 21: Roman Republic

  • 178-187

Nov 23: NO CLASS [Thanksgiving]


Week 10: Rome [by time period]

Nov 26: Roman Republic and Roman Early Empire (Pompeii and the Cities around Vesuvius)

  • Kleiner 188-197

Nov 28: Roman Early Empire (Augustus)

  • Kleiner 197-200 (stop after the section on the Forum of Augustus)

Nov 30: Roman Early Empire (Julio-Claudians and Flavians) and Roman High Empire (Trajan)

  • Kleiner 201 (start with the section on Nero’s Golden house)-209


Week 11: Rome [by time period]

Dec 3: Roman High Empire (Hadrian and the Antonines)

  • Kleiner: 210-218 (skip “from cremation to burial” on p.216 through “Melfi sarcophagus” on p. 218; pick up again with “Iaia of Cyzicus” and “Mummy Portraits” on p. 218)

Dec 5: Roman Late Empire (Severans through Constantine)

  • Kleiner: 219-231

Dec 7: TBD

Exam week Office Hours: Monday, December 10, 1:30-3:30pm (Denny 227)

Final Exam: Tuesday December 11, 2018, 2:30-4:20pm, ART 003 [the map IDs, slide IDs, and term IDs come from material from November 19 through December 7; some of the essay questions are cumulative, and thus cover material from the entire course]

Catalog Description: 
Major achievements in painting, sculpture, architecture, and the decorative arts in Europe, the Near East, and North Africa, from prehistoric times to the beginnings of Christianity.
GE Requirements: 
Visual, Literary, and Performing Arts (VLPA)
Last updated: 
October 17, 2018 - 9:11pm