Case Assignment

Image of Jacque-Louis David’s Oath of Horatti

Image of Eugène Delacroix, Liberty Leading the People:

The Age of Enlightenment was followed by the Romantic period, an expanse of time that saw the French Revolution, the American Revolution, the rise and fall of Napoleon, major scientific advances, major loss of human life, devout faith in the doctrine of human reason, and the loss of faith in human reason and a return to the sublime right of nature and spirituality. In short, a span of time defined by massive change and inconsistency. In this case assignment, compare the Neo-Classicist painter Jacque-Louis David’s Oath of Horatti and Romanticist painter Eugène Delacroix,Liberty Leading the People, in order to examine how these artists represented these tumultuous years. Again, use the formal language of visual analysis to explore their artistic approaches. Briefly reference the two previous art styles we have studied (Renaissance and Baroque) in order to trace how these two new art styles (Neo-Classicism and Romanticism) differ or carry on the earlier traditions. Use the required course materials to help you discuss, briefly, (1) the history of Neo-Classical and Romanticist art and these two artists in particular, (2) the different approaches and beliefs in human reason and rationality, and (3) how David and Delacroix chose to convey revolution.

It is important to note that this assignment is your third encounter with Art History and Art Criticism, and it is equally important that you continue to exercise your ability to visually analyze. The required course materials under “How To Write About Art: Art Criticism and Formal Analysis” will continue to aid you in developing these skills.

Assignment Expectations

Here are five keys to writing a great Case Assignment! For each Case in this course, please:

  1. Make sure you fully address the case assignment prompt- don’t just describe the painting and don’t forget to ‘really look’ at the painting. Be sure to respond to the expectations stated under “Learning Outcomes” in the Syllabus.
  2. Apply ideas from the background readings to your analysis and discussion of the case assignment prompt.
  3. Write, at minimum, three to four pages, not including images or references.
  4. Include a separate cover page that includes your name, the course name, the module, and assignment name.
  5. Set your format to 1″ margins on all four sides, 12-point font, double-spaced.

Include a separate cover AND reference page at the end that includes every website and article on which you base your information and analysis. In the reference list, please note that a URL with no additional information is not a complete reference. Over time, link root will make any URL useless. Each reference should contain all the information a reader would need to find the source.

In this Case Assignment, you will:

  • Give an explanation of the values—influences, themes, techniques, subjects—characteristic of the period or style under study.
  • Give some information about how the social, political, or religious history of the period influenced its art and artists.
  • Provide biographical information about the artist whose work is assigned or (in SLP assignments) chosen for reflection.

Required Reading

History of Neo-Classical and Romanticism (video)

Annenberg Media (n.d.). Art of the Western World: An Age of Reason, An Age of Passion. Retrieved on 2/20/11 at:

Neo-Classicism, Jacque-Louis David, and Oath of the Horatii

Romanticism, Eugene Delacroix, and Liberty Leading the People

How To Write About Art: Art Criticism and Formal Analysis

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