Graduate project

A Postmodern Curriculum in Secondary Visual Art Education: Beet Juice, Lace, and Tomahawks

ABSTRACT
 A POSTMODERN CURRICULUM IN SECONDARY VISUAL ART
 EDUCATION: BEET JUICE, LACE, AND TOMAHAWKS
 by
 © Lorinda Mae Stevens 2010
 Master of Arts in Education
 Curriculum and Instruction Option
 California State University, Chico
 Spring 2010
 Postmodern theory is, at best, ambiguous and at its worst, contentious and
 nihilistic. Regardless of these characteristics, it has rocketed to the forefront of critical
 theory in art, education, politics, anthropology and the social sciences. When peeling
 back the layers of description and conjecture, found is substantial and essential aspects
 that deserve immediate attention. This project discusses postmodernism, a number of
 indisputable postmodern components, and their significance in creating a democratic,
 21st century education. It focuses upon several major assertions that postmodern theory
 promotes: the power of mini-narratives and “others,” including feminism; cultural inclusion;
 the interpretation of reality and truths; the fragmentation of time and space; an
 evaluation of power/knowledge connections; and in the arts- representation, ambiguity
 ix
 and double-coding. Ultimately, postmodernism promotes freedom of discourse shared
 through a variety of communal mediums. Imbuing these elements of postmodernism into
 art pedagogy, and education in general, would advance an education worthy of 21st century
 concerns. This project paper is followed by twelve units as may be implemented in a
 secondary visual arts curriculum. The units vary in theme, theory and media, but all
 clearly address the significance and immediacy of postmodernism. Finally, recommendations
 are made with which to further the realization of postmodern theory into visual art
 curriculums.

ABSTRACT A POSTMODERN CURRICULUM IN SECONDARY VISUAL ART EDUCATION: BEET JUICE, LACE, AND TOMAHAWKS by © Lorinda Mae Stevens 2010 Master of Arts in Education Curriculum and Instruction Option California State University, Chico Spring 2010 Postmodern theory is, at best, ambiguous and at its worst, contentious and nihilistic. Regardless of these characteristics, it has rocketed to the forefront of critical theory in art, education, politics, anthropology and the social sciences. When peeling back the layers of description and conjecture, found is substantial and essential aspects that deserve immediate attention. This project discusses postmodernism, a number of indisputable postmodern components, and their significance in creating a democratic, 21st century education. It focuses upon several major assertions that postmodern theory promotes: the power of mini-narratives and “others,” including feminism; cultural inclusion; the interpretation of reality and truths; the fragmentation of time and space; an evaluation of power/knowledge connections; and in the arts- representation, ambiguity ix and double-coding. Ultimately, postmodernism promotes freedom of discourse shared through a variety of communal mediums. Imbuing these elements of postmodernism into art pedagogy, and education in general, would advance an education worthy of 21st century concerns. This project paper is followed by twelve units as may be implemented in a secondary visual arts curriculum. The units vary in theme, theory and media, but all clearly address the significance and immediacy of postmodernism. Finally, recommendations are made with which to further the realization of postmodern theory into visual art curriculums.

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