Thinking Like Leonardo

Full Course Title: 
Thinking Like Leonardo DaVinci

The course will address local to global issues (Renaissance Italy to the rest of the world), historical issues (situating Leonardo within a particular context), and critical and creative thinking. Student reflections, class discussions, and final projects will provide both low and high stakes opportunities to communicate clearly and effectively. In class discussions also allow the development of a community and participation. Group trips to local galleries and performances will allow further engagement in communities beyond the campus. The goal of thinking critically and creatively is not new. One of the most notable and profound practitioners was Leonardo DaVinci. This course will briefly look at DaVinci’s life, times, and art and then examine seven patterns of thought that he typified. Each student will select a cross-cultural issue, and respond to it in journal entries. For each two-week session, the instructor will work with students to identify a current day practitioner who exemplifies the method regarding a local to global issue. The students will present candidates for this from their topics of interest. These might include, but will not be limited to: the movement of refugees into the United States, providing clean water to developing nations, sharing rather appropriating indigenous culture art, and the idea of “international charity.”

Course Details
Course Number: 
Section Number(s) and Day/Times Taught: 
158: MWF 10:00-10:50am
Spring 2024
The Arts
Global Issues
Civic Engagement

Layne McDaniel

Layne McDaniel

Dr. McDaniel is a graduate of Wofford college and received her Ph. D. in History and her certificate in Women's Studies from Emory University. Her specialized research interests include women in the 19th century American South, educational history, gender issues, social history, intellectual history, and textile history. She has taught at ASU for the past eight years. Her courses have included History and Society, History and Culture, American history surveys, North Carolina history, and three FYS courses: "Where Did You Get That Tee Shirt," "What if Harry Potter Is Real," and "Steampunk Civilizations." This past spring she taught "Bathing Beauties and Muscled Men: Perceptions of Fitness in the United States, 1845-1945." In the fall, she will be offering a new first year seminar, "How to Think Like Leonardo DaVinci." Before coming to ASU, she taught at Auburn University and Southern Union Community College. She is currently working on a book project dealing with the intersections of race, class, gender, disability, and school desegregation in South Carolina in the 1960s-1970s.

Dr. McDaniel's interest in history and women's work connects to her hobbies of fiber art, quilting, drawing, and poetry. At one point, she was the seamstress for an academic theatre department and continues to study cosplay garments and Victorian fashion. She is obsessed with Scrabble.