Your final version of the lab project should be ready for assessment on Friday May 6 which is during the reading period. However, keep in mind that we will meet during reading period and each of you will have ten minutes to present your projects on either 5/2 or 5/4.
The goal of this project is for each of you to have a sustained, creative intellectual engagement with items of material culture in our collection. My expectation is that you will spend in the neighborhood of 20 hours developing your project. We will establish over the rest of the seminar specific times for you to have access to the items in the collection so that you can begin your research and develop the ways in which you want to approach the study, analysis and presentation of your work. Your project should have some form of an end product. This might be a tradition paper or lab report, a poster, a website, a performance, etc. Really the possibilities are endless.
Before spring break each of you should have consulted with me on what you might be interested in doing so that I can approve it. Mostly to make sure that you do not get yourself in over your head and wind up spending 100 hours on this. There is a danger in this with such a potentially open-ended assignment.
You may choose from, but are by no means limited to, any of the following topics. These should be food for thought as you think about creative ways to engage with our collection of artifacts and what they can tell us about the Muslim world.
• Consumption practices
• Technologies of production
• Specific artistic styles
• History of a particular object class (e.g. luster ware, lamps, etc.)
• Comparison of two or more objects
• An object biography of an item in the collection
• Develop an online (using the wiki perhaps) exhibition
• Forms of visualization (3D modeling, drawings, claymation, go wild)
• Make your own “Islamic” artifact – whatever that means
• The issue of taphonomy and its traces on our objects
• The notions of fragmentation, collection, recycling and reuse