Call for Book Chapters: "Pedagogical Reckoning - Decolonizing, Degendering and Deconstructing the Western Art Historical Canon"

In 2020, Yale University retired its legendary art history survey course, Introduction to Art History: Renaissance to the Present. Despite the press coverage and controversy that ensued, it was hardly the first institution of higher education to take this step. In an era when diversity, equity and inclusion is increasingly a focus of colleges and universities, a course that almost exclusively focused on the work of white men had become anachronistic. In addition, the discipline itself is moving away from using “art history” as its identifier and programs are embracing terms such as “visual studies” or “visual culture.” This is occurring because the term “art” itself privileges some forms of creative expression over others and omits a vast range of work not made as “art.”

This anthology will examine what “decolonizing the curriculum” in art history looks like. In particular, it will investigate ways in which scholars and institutions in the United States and Western Europe are introducing art history to a new, and also more diverse, population of students.

We are seeking contributors who will provide new scholarship that seeks to decolonize, degender, and deconstruct the art historical canon and/or deconstruct art history itself, but which also offers applications to the curriculum and classroom. In addition, we welcome case studies from faculty members and departments that are implementing efforts to decolonize and degender.

Papers should focus on questions such as:

  • How is the discipline changing and evolving in the 21 st century?
  • What strategies might be used in organizing art historical discourses and narratives around a multidirectional web of global connectivity?
  • How can those teaching art history in the West move toward a nonbinary categorical understanding of the world? What is included and what is omitted?
  • How can the multiple perspectives that include East and West, North and South, the colonizer and the colonized, the Pacific and the Atlantic be incorporated?
  • How do we present art produced by more complex motivations such as decolonization struggles, independence movements, and anti-colonial resistance in Africa, Asia and the Middle East on an equal footing?
  • How do we effectively incorporate multiple modernisms and various historicity that have developed in global art history into art historical curricula and classroom settings?

Contributing authors will consider various paths forward as we reconsider the way we approach the discipline as we move beyond a chronological and regional model.
Please submit a 250-word abstract and a 150-word bio to Sooran Choi at and Gillian Greenhill Hannum at by February 28, 2023. Decisions will be made by early February. Essays of approximately 8,000 words (including endnotes and bibliography) in Chicago Manual of Style with up to seven illustrations will be due to the editors July 15, 2023 for anticipated publication by Vernon Press in late fall or early winter.

This proposal is due on January 15th 2023.

Page last updated on January 27th 2023. All information correct at the time, but subject to change.