Cultural analysis with a local connection

The Culture and Society unit at ISAK arranged for the first time a course entitled The Use (and Abuse) of Culture as part of the LiU International Summer Academy. The course was fully subscribed, and the course coordinators are hoping to repeat the course next summer.

Museum of Work building. Photo credit: Ulf LiljankoskiThis summer, 185 students from LiU’s overseas partner universities gathered at the University Hospital Campus to participate in bachelor-level courses offered as part of the LiU Summer Academy. Thirty-six of them took a course entitled The Use (and Abuse) of Culture and were faced with the task of analysing and studying in depth how culture is constructed, negotiated and consumed. The course is an introduction to cultural analysis and provides critical perspectives on the concept of “culture” and its role in the increasingly complex social and political landscape in which we live. An important part of the course were field trips to Gamla Linköping, the Swedish Air Force Museum, the industrial heritage landscape of Norrköping, and Visualization Center C. All of these visits contributed in different ways to demonstrating how culture is created and presented.

The students taking the course came from different backgrounds and from many countries. “Even though the students had different levels of prior knowledge, the course went extremely well”, says Mattis Karlsson, one of the course coordinators.

“It was greatly rewarding that a course dealing with culture was given for a group with so many different backgrounds. Not only were the students from many countries, they were also taking widely different types of programme”, says Mattis.

The teachers on the course included Eva Hemmungs Wirtén, Isabelle Strömstedt, Johanna Dahlin, Olga Zabalueva, Christopher Thompson from Uppsala University, and the course coordinators Mattis Karlsson and Kristin Wagrell. An application has already been submitted to arrange the course during next year’s Summer Academy.

Students exploring the industrial heritage landscape in Norrköping
Exploring the industrial heritage landscape in Norrköping. Johanna Dahlin
The students get their hands on the interactive exhibitions at Visualization Center C.
The students get their hands on the interactive exhibitions at Visualization Center C. Mattis Karlsson
Students in classroom.
In addition to the field trips, teaching took place in workshops, lectures and seminars. Mattis Karlsson

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