• Offered by School of Art
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Classification Specialist
  • Course subject Art History
  • Areas of interest Art History
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Co-taught Course

This course will provide a broad historical introduction to textile  arts. Contrasting the role and importance of textiles in Western and non-Western societies, the course will examine textiles in court and village cultures, as symbols and markers of religious and social affiliations and hierarchy; the impact of colonialism, trade and industrialisation on the organisation of textile manufacture and traditional gender roles; and the evolution of textile motifs, designs, materials and technology. The history of textile collecting, display and analysis will also be studied.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

On successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. recognise key attributes of textiles and apply these to the identification of textiles;
  2. relate textiles to their specific aesthetic, historical and contemporary milieu;
  3. reflect on and apply key concepts in understanding textile history;
  4. analyse the ways in which meanings are formed and communicated by textiles;
  5. research, select, combine and interpret examples of textiles and inegrate key
    textual sources to develop and present, orally in writing, their own
    perspectives on textile art.


Indicative Assessment

Tutorial presentation 10% (learning outcomes 1,4,5)

Tutorial paper 1500 words 10% (2,3,4,5)

Research paper presentation 10% (1,4,5)

Research paper 3500 words 35% (1,2,3,4,5)

Visual paper 20% (1,5)

Tutorial and on-line forum participation 15% (1,2,5)

This course is offered via flexible delivery. Off-campus students will be given equivalent assessment in lieu of tutorial participation and presentations.

This course is offered via flexible delivery, off-campus students will be given equivalent assessment in lieu of the presentation and participation requirements.

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


Students can expect to spend an average of two and a half class contact hours a week (1 hour tutorial and lectures) and an additional 7.5 hours per week in reading and assignment preparation. Some classes will be held off-campus at cultural institutions in Canberra. Tutorial attendance is mandatory. Off-campus students will be given alternative tasks in lieu of tutorial attendance.

Requisite and Incompatibility

You are not able to enrol in this course if you have successfully completed ARTH2055

Preliminary Reading

Barber, E J W, Women's Work - 20,000 Years of Textiles: Women, Cloth and Society in Early Times, Norton, New York, 1994

Maxwell, R, Textiles of Southeast Asia: Tradition, Trade and Transformation, Australian National Gallery/OUP, 1990

Textile. The Journal of Cloth and Culture (available as full-text electronic journal through ANU library)



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $3054
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2016 $4368
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

There are no current offerings for this course.

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions