Arts, Media, and Social Change

Learning about local art in Bali

Download the catalog: 2013 Critical Global Issues: Arts, Media, and Social Change (PDF)

SIT Study Abroad offers multiple programs for visual, performing, and fine arts students as well as students of art history and critical theory. Students are challenged to consider the relationship between art, politics, and society in historical and contemporary periods.

Essential to SIT arts program are visits to art galleries, concerts and recitals, film festivals, dance and drama performances, archaeological sites, shrines, and/or museums. Programs incorporating a studio arts component provide students the opportunity to undertake workshops, independent studio work, or other hands-on artistic pursuits in areas such as painting, ceramics, sculpture, photography, dance, musical instruments, or creative writing.    

Topics of inquiry include:

  • The role of art in relation to political systems and popular ideologies
  • Art, power, social control, and creative dissent
  • Art and religion
  • Critical theory, aesthetic theory, research ethics, and the methodology of studying the arts of another society
  • Implications of local/global, urban/rural, and cross-regional factors on shifting art forms
  • Performing arts and theories of aesthetic response
  • Commoditization of the arts and the relationship between art and economies

With programs on four continents, students can:

  • Scrutinize the fundamental human language of rituals, signs, and symbols while discovering the rich and varied arts of India with its legacy of millennia of artistic development;
  • Experience the enormous contribution to African arts and culture made by Senegal, a nation that has inspired three centuries of poets, novelists, and artists;
  • Learn documentary filmmaking techniques and complete a practicum in video and media production under the guidance of award-winning filmmaker, Ismael Saavedra, in Bolivia;
  • Explore the craftwork, music, and performing arts of Ghana by working with local artists and art critics;
  • Become immersed in Prague’s contemporary arts scene by enrolling in the city’s ongoing arts workshops and classes alongside Czech students;
  • Investigate the interrelations of artistic creativity, religious ritual, and cultural values in Indonesia, with the opportunity for practical experience with local art forms in contemporary Bali and Java.

In some cases, final projects may include a creative or artistic component in place, or as part, of the traditional Independent Study Project (ISP).