- 1. Dada and Surrealism: a historical overview
- 2. ‘Rather life’: promoting Dada and Surrealism
- 3. Art and anti-art
- 4. ‘Who am I?’: mind/spirit/body
- 5. Politics
- 6. Looking back on Dada and Surrealism
Dada and Surrealism: A Very Short Introduction focuses on the many debates surrounding these movements: the Marquis de Sade's Surrealist deification, issues of quality, the idea of the ‘readymade’, attitudes towards the city, the impact of Freud, attitudes to women, and primitivism. Where does the Dadaist obsession with the body-as-mechanism come from? Why are the Surrealists obsessed with the fetishized/eroticized body? Dada and Surrealism continue to have a huge influence on cultural practice, especially in contemporary art, with its obsession with sexuality, fetishism, and shock tactics. A huge range of media is employed by both movements (collage, painting, found objects, performance art, photography, film), but there are aesthetic differences between them.