Emil Ruder, “The Typography of Order” (1959) Subject   Art and Design

Type      Essay

Level     College

Style      MLA

Sources                4

Language             English(U.S.)


As the field of graphic design has grown, so too have designers taken more authorship over the content of

their work. The “artistic printers” of the 19th century hardly felt responsible for the content of the messages

they produced—they were formatters, entrepreneurs, and machine operators. In the 20th century, graphic

designers saw themselves much more as authors—or at least co-authors—of the messages they produced.

Write a 1000-word essay dealing with the theme of authorship in graphic design using a minimum of 3

primary sources that we have read in this course (list below). Analyze the argument or point of view of each

source, making sure to contextualize it against the social or cultural movements and historical period in which

it was written. Where possible, provide examples of specific works from design history that support the ideas

of authorship that you are discussing.

An “A” essay will:

Correctly analyze at least 3 sources from the course from the point of view of changing or evolving ideas of authorship in

graphic design

Correctly locate ideas about design as part of a larger historical, artistic, or cultural context

Identify specific works as evidence of this change

Have a thesis statement that ties your analysis into a cohesive argument

Be written in succinct and specific prose, avoiding generalities

Properly cite sources in Chicago style

TEXTS: Adolf Loos,”Ornament and Crime” (1908)

  1. T. Marinetti, “The Founding and Manifesto of Futurism” (1909)

Tristan Tzara, “Dada Manifesto” (1918)

  1. Gabo and A. Pevsner “Realistic Manifesto” (1920)
  2. Rodchenko, V. Stepanova, and A. Gan “Who We Are: Manifesto of the Constructivist Group” (1922)

Walter Gropius, “The Theory and Organization of the Bauhaus” (1923)

El Lissitzky, “Topography of Typography” (1923)

L?szl? Moholy-Nagy, “Typophoto” (1925)

Jan Tschichold, “Principles of the New Typography” (1928) (excerpt)

Alexey Brodovitch, “What Pleases the Modern Man” (1930)

Beatrice Warde, “The Crystal Goblet, or Printing Should Be Invisible” (1932)

Walter Benjamin, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” (1936)

Walter Paepcke, “Art in Industry” (1946)

Will Burtin, “Integration: The New Discipline in Design” (1949)


Spacing Double

Pages    3

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