Theory and Philosophy

Part of the minor Design, Art, and Technology

The relationship between design, art, and technology is a is an ancient and complex one. Even if we contemporary people see these three fields as intimately connected, we are still prone to view them as separated fields of human endeavor. However, before modern times, design, art, and technology formed one complete whole: a whole that was at center stage for most of the historical period. On this stage, these fields danced together in mutual harmony in order to connect people with each other and with their surroundings, and in so doing created respect, produced understanding, and (eventually) formed societies.

In this module, we explore this intricate and interesting dance from a historical and philosophical perspective. We start with the emergence of Art in singular and with a capital A in the eighteenth century. From that point we dive into the ancient history to analyse the roots of the unity of design, art, and technology. From there, we explicate the changing role of art as a result of the upcoming middle class and the emergence of the scientific world view. We end our journey with the liberation of art from ritual en the changing function of design as a result.

In total, the module consist of six 'chapters'; every chapter is composed of articles, video's, or other media to bring home the central point of that chapter. Accompanying the chapters is a series of questions to guide students through the subject matter and a set of assignments to challenge the students to put these matters into their words and to relate them to their own works.

Acclaims for Theory and Philosophy