Spectacle Pedagogy

Art, Politics, and Visual Culture

By Charles R. Garoian & Yvonne M. Gaudelius

Subjects: Curriculum
Paperback : 9780791473863, 173 pages, March 2008
Hardcover : 9780791473856, 173 pages, April 2008

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Table of contents

List of Illustrations
1. The Embodied Pedagogy of War
2. The Spectacle of Visual Culture
3. The Impossible Task as Ecological Imperative
4. Art Education in the Silent Gaps of Visual Culture
5. Misfit Pedagogy of Visual Culture: A Depraved Obsession with Pictures
6. Curriculum and Pedagogy as Collage Narrative
7. The Spectre of Visual Culture and the Hauntology of Collage
8. The Dis-eased Pedagogy of Disaster Tourism

Examines the interrelationships between art, politics, and visual culture post-9/11.


This book examines the complex interrelationships between art, politics, and visual culture through the concept of spectacle pedagogy. In a series of essays Charles R. Garoian and Yvonne M. Gaudelius utilize the narratives of collage, montage, assemblage, installation, and performance art to expose, examine, and critique the pervasive influence of visual culture. Looking at current events such as the war in Iraq and on terrorism, as well as modes of communication that include advertising and photography, they note that while visual culture has the power to teach us what and how to see and think, as well as to influence how humans interact with one another, it is imperative to understand—particularly for students—the complex and contradictory relationships that exist between art-making activities and the spectacle pedagogy of visual culture.

At Penn State at University Park, Charles R. Garoian is Director of the School of Visual Arts and Professor of Art Education, and Yvonne M. Gaudelius is Professor of Art Education and Women's Studies. Garoian is the author of Performing Pedagogy: Toward an Art of Politics, also published by SUNY Press. Gaudelius is the coauthor (with Peg Speirs) of Contemporary Issues in Art Education.


"…Garoian and Gaudelius eloquently reconceptualize critical pedagogy within the theoretical framework of collage. By emphasizing the political decentering processes of collage, Spectacle Pedagogy proves collage to be an invaluable concept for the practice of critical pedagogy within the spectacle of media culture. " — TOPIA

"Spectacle Pedagogy, written by two of the most forward-thinking scholars in the field, is timely, relevant, and pushes art education theory beyond its limits. Intellectually speaking, it is one of the best books I've read in a long time. " — Kristin Congdon, author of Community Art in Action

"The topics that the authors address are cutting-edge and compelling, and the authors are obviously passionate about them, but also reasoned in their approach. " — Doug Blandy, coeditor of Remembering Others: Making Invisible Histories of Art Education Visible