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Visual Culture, Diplomacy, and Artificial Intelligence

This course addresses the intersection of visual culture, diplomacy, and artificial intelligence. It is designed to give students an introduction to the unexpected convergences in academia, industry, and government that have been fostered by the latest technologies, especially in computer vision science. The course is designed to familiarize students with the range of theories and methodologies that are informing and shaping the policy landscape around technology in data science, art history and visual culture, media studies, government, international relations, and the law.

Building upon traditional approaches to the theory of soft power, especially as they pertain to our visual culture, the course is intended to encourage students to re-examine the meaning of soft power in a technocratic world and to challenge them to consider new approaches to its ever-increasing national and international applications. Overall, the course is intended to bring attention to the latest confluences in traditionally siloed fields of study around AI and to provide students with the background necessary to join the ethical discourse around emerging technology that is impacting national and international policy decisions.


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