Grade Levels: Upper-Elementary, Middle, High School
In this Encounter students place The Dinner Party in an art historical context. In order to build upon their understanding of gender and gender stereotypes, students form research groups and collect data about the representation of women in such places as art textbooks, children’s books about artists and art, and museum and gallery exhibitions. The Encounter contains suggestions for helping students become familiar with the art historical context in which The Dinner Party was created. In addition, students investigate the activist work of The Guerilla Girls and become familiar with the group’s approach to gathering and reporting data. Students are encouraged to engage in their own data-gathering and to create ways of representing it.
It is important for students to understand the significance of the creation of The Dinner Party at the time it was made. It is also important that they understand how women have been represented in artworks over time. Through their various investigations into the inadequate ways women have been represented, students will gain a crucial understanding of the need for The Dinner Party both then and now. To view the entire Encounter, download the PDF for Encounter 5: Gender Matters in Art History and its Classroom Connections by clicking on the buttons below.