Introduction to Film

10100
ARTH 20000, ENGL 10800, ARTV 20300
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
T. Tsunoda; Staff

This course introduces basic concepts of film analysis, which are discussed through examples from different national cinemas, genres, and directorial oeuvres. Along with questions of film technique and style, we consider the notion of the cinema as an institution that comprises an industrial system of production, social and aesthetic norms and codes, and particular modes of reception. Films discussed include works by Hitchcock, Porter, Griffith, Eisenstein, Lang, Renoir, Sternberg, and Welles.

Film and the Moving Image

14400
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
A. Field; J. Lastra

This course seeks to develop skills in perception, comprehension, and interpretation when dealing with film and other moving image media. It encourages the close analysis of audiovisual forms, their materials and formal attributes, and explores the range of questions and methods appropriate to the explication of a given film or moving image text. It also examines the intellectual structures basic to the systematic study and understanding of moving images. Most importantly, the course aims to foster in students the ability to translate this understanding into verbal expression, both oral and written. Texts and films are drawn from the history of narrative, experimental, animated, and documentary or non-fiction cinema. Screenings are a mandatory course component.

Prerequisite (s): Open only to non-CMS majors. May not count toward a CMS major. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical and visual arts.

Senior Colloquium

29800
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
J. Stewart

This seminar is designed to provide fourth-year students with a sense of the variety of methods and approaches in the field (e.g., formal analysis, cultural history, industrial history, reception studies, psychoanalysis). Students present material related to their BA project, which is discussed in relation to the issues of the course.

Documentary Production I

23930
33930
ARTV 23930, ARTV 33930
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
J. Hoffman

Documentary Video Production focuses on the making of independent documentary video.  Examples of Direct Cinema, Cinéma Vérité, the Essay, Ethnographic film, the Diary, Historical and Biographical film, Agitprop/Activist forms, and Guerilla Television, will be screened and discussed. Issues embedded in the documentary genre, such as the ethics and politics of representation and the shifting lines between documentary fact and fiction will be explored. Pre-production strategies and production techniques will be taught, including the camera, interviews and sound recording, shooting in available light, working in crews, and post-production editing.  Students will be expected to purchase a portable firewire. A five-minute string-out/rough-cut will be screened at the end of the quarter. Students are encouraged to take Doc. Production II to complete their work.

The Cinema of Charlie Chaplin

26400
36400
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
Y. Tsivian

The course looks at Chaplin and his long film career from a number of perspectives. One of these is Chaplin’s acting technique inherited from commedia dell’arte and enriched by cinematic devices; another is Chaplin as a person involved in a series of political and sexual scandals; yet another one is Chaplin as a myth fashioned within twentieth-century art movements like German Expressionist poetry, French avant-garde painting, or Soviet Constructivist art.

Prerequisite(s): CMST 10100 Introduction to Film or consent of instructor.

Introduction to Art, Technology, and Media

27815
37815
ARTH 21315 / 31315
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
I. Blom

The course gives an introduction to the relationship between art, media and technology, as articulated in art practice, media theory and art theory/history. Key focus is the relationship between 20th Century art and so-called "new media" (from photography, film, radio, TV to computers and digital technologies) but older instances of art- and media-historical perspectives will also be discussed. The objective of the course is to give insight into the historical exchanges between art and technological development, as well as critical tools for discussing the concept of the medium and the relationship between art, sensation/perception, visuality and mediation. The course will also function as an introduction to the fields of media aesthetics and media archaeology.

Methods and Issues

40000
ARTH 39900, ENGL 48000, MAPH 33000
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
D. Morgan

This course offers an introduction to ways of reading, writing on, and teaching film. The focus of discussion will range from methods of close analysis and basic concepts of film form, technique and style; through industrial/critical categories of genre and authorship (studios, stars, directors); through aspects of the cinema as a social institution, psycho-sexual apparatus and cultural practice; to the relationship between filmic texts and the historical horizon of production and reception. Films discussed will include works by Griffith, Lang, Hitchcock, Deren, Godard.

Media Wars: Resistance, Gender and Sexuality, and Discourses of Truth and Non-Truth

20400
40400
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
J. Wild

In our contemporary moment, we have become accustomed to terms such as “counter-terrorism” that signal an effort to resist internal and external threats, and those suggesting that we live in an age of “post-truth” dominated by “corporate-media,” “fake news,” and “fact-challenged” journalism. Taking this contemporary platform as our starting place, this class explores how these terms and their use have been gendered; have situated both gender and sexuality within their discursive purview; and have also deployed concepts of gender and sexuality as either weapons of resistance or objects of destruction. This class will be historically organized insofar as we will begin our discussion with ways that media— broadly conceived to include cinema, print and visual-cultural forms, television, and the internet— have aimed to “counter” patriarchal, heteronormative, and hegemonic systems of representation of gender and sexuality, while also discussing how media discourses of truth and non-truth have been historically constructed and deployed (documentary; propaganda). This class will also function as a research laboratory, where students will be asked to track, evaluate, and theorize contemporary or historical media that situate gender and sexuality within a so-called “media war,” or in their construction and dissemination of “truth” and/or resistance.  

History of International Cinema, Part I: Silent Era

28500
48500
Arth 28500, ARTH 38500, CMLT 22400, CMLT 32400, ENGL 29300, ENGL 48700, MAPH 33600, ARTV 20002
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
J. Lastra

This is the first part of a two-quarter course. The two parts may be taken individually, but taking them in sequence is helpful. The aim of this course is to introduce students to what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological. We will discuss main national schools and international trends of filmmaking.

The Films of Ozu Yasujiro

66901
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
T. Tsunoda

This course explores Ozu Yasujiro’s works from both national and transnational perspectives. Through an intense examination of Ozu’s robust filmmaking career, from the student comedies of the late 1920s to the family dramas (in Agfacolor) of the early 1960s, we will locate Ozu’s works at a dialogic focal point of Japanese, East Asian, American and European cinema.

Philosophy and Film

67310
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
D. Morgan

This seminar addresses the intersection of aesthetics, post-analytic philosophy, and cinema. We are interested in a range of questions organized around issues of style and ethics; in particular, we hope to explore the role that criteria play in aesthetic judgments, and how these criteria might relate to the ones that support other sorts of judgments (about skepticism and the external world; seriousness; and the historical past). Our wager is that cinema can generate such questions and demonstrate both their significance and their mutual interrelation. Rather than rehearsing arguments to the effect that cinema can attain the condition of philosophy, we hope to chart new routes of analytic description. To that end we will work through films by Mizoguchi, Welles, Chaplin, Lubitsch, Bresson, Godard, Malick, and Baillie, with readings from Cavell, Burch, Wittgenstein, Aumont, Austin, Chion and others.

Pedagogy: The Way We Teach Film

69900
  • Graduate
  • Autumn
  • 2017-2018
J. Wild

This course, spread across the year, is an introduction to pedagogical methods in the field of Cinema and Media Studies. It is intended for, and open only to, CMS PhD Students.

Introduction to Film

10100
ARTH 20000, ENGL 10800, ARTV 20300
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
T. Tsunoda; Staff

This course introduces basic concepts of film analysis, which are discussed through examples from different national cinemas, genres, and directorial oeuvres. Along with questions of film technique and style, we consider the notion of the cinema as an institution that comprises an industrial system of production, social and aesthetic norms and codes, and particular modes of reception. Films discussed include works by Hitchcock, Porter, Griffith, Eisenstein, Lang, Renoir, Sternberg, and Welles.

Film and the Moving Image

14400
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
D. Morgan; R. Neer

This course seeks to develop skills in perception, comprehension, and interpretation when dealing with film and other moving image media. It encourages the close analysis of audiovisual forms, their materials and formal attributes, and explores the range of questions and methods appropriate to the explication of a given film or moving image text. It also examines the intellectual structures basic to the systematic study and understanding of moving images. Most importantly, the course aims to foster in students the ability to translate this understanding into verbal expression, both oral and written. Texts and films are drawn from the history of narrative, experimental, animated, and documentary or non-fiction cinema. Screenings are a mandatory course component.

Prerequisite (s): Open only to non-CMS majors. May not count toward a CMS major. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical and visual arts.

Cinema and Magic

14460
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
T. Gunning

This Core class will explore  the connection between cinema and ideas of magic, including, the relation of film to magical illusions; the relation of avant-garde films to occult ideas of magic and the portrayal of magic and the occult in films.

South African Fictions and Factions

24813
ENGL 24813
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
L. Kruger

This course examines the intersection of narrative in print and film (fiction and documentary) in Southern Africa since mid 20th Century decolonization. We begin with Cry, the Beloved Country, a best seller written by South African Alan Paton while in the US, and the original film version by a Hungarian-born British-based director (Zoltan Korda), and an American screenwriter (John Howard Lawson), which together show both the international impact of South African stories and the important elements missed by overseas audiences. We will continue with fictional and nonfictional narrative responses to apartheid and decolonization in film and in print, and examine the power and the limits of what critic Louise Bethlehem has called the “rhetoric of urgency” on local and international audiences. We will conclude with writing and film that grapples with the complexities of the post-apartheid world, whose challenges, from crime and corruption to AIDS and the particular problems faced by women and gender minorities, elude the heroic formulas of the anti-apartheid struggle era.

Japanese Cinema: 1950 to Present

24919
  • Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
T. Tsunoda

In this course, we will look at the history and theory of cinema and media culture in Japan. We will closely examine the Golden Age of the 1950s and its precipitous decline, the rise of the new cinemas in the 1960s, and the postmodern and independent cinemas in the face of global capitalism. The course will also pay attention to topics of contemporary media such as media convergence, the media ecologies of contemporary anime (and manga/comic), and media activism after the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. We will proceed through careful analysis of films, anime, and digital media, while also addressing larger questions of historiography, and work to integrate such inquiries into discussions of film style and aesthetics, identity, the nation and other issues.

Issues in Film Sound

28003
38003
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
J. Lastra

Taking advantage of recent developments in the field of sound studies, this course examines issues in film sound (technology, sense experience, histories of listening, sonic space, soundscape construction, the materiality of sound formats, etc.) that speak to broader concerns in the humanities, especially sound-related arts.  While we will focus on a film or films every week, from blockbusters like Gravity to avant-garde and experimental films, the readings and issues will touch on everything from noise pollution, architecture, musical performance and recording, and mp3 files. Students interested in installation and environmental arts, sound in literary studies, music, and other sound-focused fields are welcome.

History of International Cinema, Part II: Sound to 1960

28600
48600
ARTH 28600, ARTH 38600, CMLT 22500, CMLT 32500, ENGL 29600, ENGL 48900, MAPH 33700, ARTV 20003
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
Y. Tsivian

The center of this course is film style, from the classical scene breakdown to the introduction of deep focus, stylistic experimentation, and technical innovation (sound, wide screen, location shooting). The development of a film culture is also discussed. Texts include Thompson and Bordwell's Film History: An Introduction; and works by Bazin, Belton, Sitney, and Godard. Screenings include films by Hitchcock, Welles, Rossellini, Bresson, Ozu, Antonioni, and Renoir.

 

What Was Mise-en-scène?

67211
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
T. Gunning

Mise-en-scène is often understood as a synonym for the act of directing, especially in theater. In film style it is associated with the importance accorded to the placement of props and characters within the film frame, usually in combination with camera movement. This concept was especially important in film criticism of the fifties and sixties and often connected with key post-WWII filmmakers such as Nicholas Ray, Douglas Sirk and Otto Preminger.  This seminar will explore the concept both as historical critical concept, and as an ongoing way to discuss the nature of film style.

Senses and Technology

68008
  • Graduate
  • Winter
  • 2017-2018
J. Lastra

This seminar examines the fraught relationship between the human sensorium, and its mediations through what we might call “sense technologies,” such as photography, phonography, moving images, radio, computers, telephones and virtual reality.  Understanding aesthetic practices as concretizations of sense experience or as formal realizations of experience has a long and storied history as does modeling devices on suppositions about how we see, hear, touch, etc. The contradictions that inevitably arise between practice and theory are one of the motors or both formal and technological change, and the dialectic between how we understand sensory experience in general and how it manifests itself in various institutional settings (the laboratory, the courts, the film industry, video gaming, etc.) will be a touchstone for the class.  We will examine both theoretical and historical approaches to understanding various sense/technology relationships since the eighteenth century.

Introduction to Film

10100
ARTH 20000, ENGL 10800, ARTV 20300
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
Staff

This course introduces basic concepts of film analysis, which are discussed through examples from different national cinemas, genres, and directorial oeuvres. Along with questions of film technique and style, we consider the notion of the cinema as an institution that comprises an industrial system of production, social and aesthetic norms and codes, and particular modes of reception. Films discussed include works by Hitchcock, Porter, Griffith, Eisenstein, Lang, Renoir, Sternberg, and Welles.

PQ: Required of students majoring in Cinema and Media Studies.

Visual Style in Still and Moving Images

14505
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
Y. Tsivian

The course surveys elements of styles and techniques common to the visual arts. We will discuss framing and editing, moment and movement, action and narration and other visual devices as used by artists, photographers, architects and filmmakers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

PQ: For non-majors, any CMST 14400 through 14599 course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts.

The Detective Film

25505
  • Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
T. Gunning

This course will survey the detective genre from its origins in the silent serial film through its development in film noir and neo-noir as well as its transformation in what is often called Metaphysical Detective films which explore the limits of the genre.

Contemporary Media in Japan

24923
34923
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
T. Tsunoda

This course will investigate contemporary films, audiovisual media works, and electronic media creations that explore and/or reflect such issues as ambient aesthetics, self-mediation, and new techniques of everyday life.

The Films of Alfred Hitchcock

26500
36500
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
T. Gunning

No single filmmaker has equaled Alfred Hitchcock’s combination of popular success, critical commentary and widespread influence on other filmmakers. Currently, his work is so familiar it threatens to be taken for granted. This course will reveal Hitchcock as the filmmaker who systematically used the stylistics of late silent film to forge a dialectical approach to the so-called Classical Style. Hitchcock devised a relation among narrative, spectator and character point of view, yielding a configuration of suspense, sensation and perception. Tracing Hitchcock’s career chronologically, we will follow his intertwining of sexual desire and gender politics, and his reshaping of melodrama according to Freudian concepts of repression, memory, interpretation and abreaction, as he navigates from silent film to sound and from Great Britain to Hollywood.

PQ: CMST 10100 - Introduction to Film Analysis, and preferably CMST 28500 - History of International Cinema, Part I.

Guillotine / Barricade: Figures of History Across Media

53500
CDIN 53500
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
J. Wild

Taking up the French historical technologies of the guillotine and the barricade, this doctoral seminar explores the history of political spectacle, violence, death, and resistance as also part of a history of figuration—conceptualized by Julia Kristeva as the establishment of a relation between two historical realities—across media. We will examine the actual materials and practices of the guillotine and the barricade alongside literary, artistic, and filmic works that deploy the figural logic of both technologies as part of their formal, representational, and/or political articulation. This seminar thus seeks to examine the methodological stakes of inter-medial and interdisciplinary history and historiography that draws equally from French history, literature, visual art (including sculpture), architecture, and film. This class will be taught in English; French reading and research skills are not necessary, but would be beneficial.

The Archive of Absence: Theories and Methodologies of Evidence

67812
  • Graduate
  • Spring
  • 2017-2018
A. Field

In this graduate seminar we will investigate theories and historiographic methodologies of approaching problems of evidence in film history, with a particular focus on approaches to nonextant film, film fragments, unidentified film, and other “mysteries” of film history. Some of these problems are about gaps: how has film history grappled with the absence and instability of the film artifact? Others, especially in a newly digital world, involve abundance: how can film history and historiography navigate the polyvalences of meaning brought about by an ever-expanding archive? This course will combine theoretical readings, analyses of case studies, and students’ own research. Topics to be covered include the use of extrafilmic evidence and primary paracinematic evidence, fiction and speculative approaches to history, theories of evidence, and archival theories and practices. We’ll also focus on the possibilities and limits of various historiographic methodologies, touching on the use of oral history, biographic research, and official and unofficial discourses. Cases will be drawn from the silent era to contemporary cinema, and from a range of film practices including avant-garde, Classical Hollywood, African American, European art cinema, and others.

Introduction to Film

10100
ARTH 20000,ENGL 10800,ARTV 25300
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
S. Skvirsky

This course introduces basic concepts of film analysis, which are discussed through examples from different national cinemas, genres, and directorial oeuvres. Along with questions of film technique and style, we consider the notion of the cinema as an institution that comprises an industrial system of production, social and aesthetic norms and codes, and particular modes of reception. Films discussed include works by Hitchcock, Porter, Griffith, Eisenstein, Lang, Renoir, Sternberg, and Welles.

Introduction to Film

10100
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
Staff

This course introduces basic concepts of film analysis, which are discussed through examples from different national cinemas, genres, and directorial oeuvres. Along with questions of film technique and style, we consider the notion of the cinema as an institution that comprises an industrial system of production, social and aesthetic norms and codes, and particular modes of reception. Films discussed include works by Hitchcock, Porter, Griffith, Eisenstein, Lang, Renoir, Sternberg, and Welles.

Film and the Moving Image

14400
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
S. Skvirsky

This course seeks to develop skills in perception, comprehension, and interpretation when dealing with film and other moving image media. It encourages the close analysis of audiovisual forms, their materials and formal attributes, and explores the range of questions and methods appropriate to the explication of a given film or moving image text. It also examines the intellectual structures basic to the systematic study and understanding of moving images. Most importantly, the course aims to foster in students the ability to translate this understanding into verbal expression, both oral and written. Texts and films are drawn from the history of narrative, experimental, animated, and documentary or non-fiction cinema. Screenings are a mandatory course component.

Open only to non-CMS majors. May not count toward a CMS major. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical and visual arts.

 

Film and the Moving Image

14400
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
A. Field

This course seeks to develop skills in perception, comprehension, and interpretation when dealing with film and other moving image media. It encourages the close analysis of audiovisual forms, their materials and formal attributes, and explores the range of questions and methods appropriate to the explication of a given film or moving image text. It also examines the intellectual structures basic to the systematic study and understanding of moving images. Most importantly, the course aims to foster in students the ability to translate this understanding into verbal expression, both oral and written. Texts and films are drawn from the history of narrative, experimental, animated, and documentary or non-fiction cinema. Screenings are a mandatory course component.

Open only to non-CMS majors. May not count toward a CMS major. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical and visual arts.

 

Cinema in Theory and Practice

14503
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
D. Bluher

The course proposes an introduction to audio-visual literacy through the analysis of films, selective readings, and short film exercises focusing on fundamental cinematic elements such as shot, framing, point of view, camera movement, editing, and relations of image and sound. Assignments will consist in in writing review sheets and a formal film analysis, and in creating 1-3 minute single-shot movies based on the works seen and discussed in class. This course is open only to non-Cinema and Media Studies majors and cannot be counted toward the major. This course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical and visual arts.

Three Film Masters of South Korea

24621
EALC 24510
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
H. Park

This course examines selected film texts of three representative film masters in South Korea: Shin Sang-ok, Kim Ki-young, and Im Kwon-taek, who began their careers as popular film directors, and now are considered ‘auteurs’ of Korean cinema by their unique visual styles and narratives that reflect main concerns and issues of post-war Korean society. The leading figure of the Golden Age, Shin Sang-ok (1926-2006) demonstrates virtuosity in mainstream drama film productions as he explores topical issues such as the impact of modernity on women and Korean society during accelerated national development. In contrast to Shin’s mild style, the grotesque cinema of Kim Ki-young (1919-1998) showcases eroticism, horror, and thrillers that inscribe the fear of modernization onto the world of desire and fantasy. Im Kwon-taek (1936-present) articulates the scars of modern Korean history and its vanishing culture at the expense of industrialization through the spheres of traditional art, religion, and the sacrificed female body. Taken together, the chosen films of these three directors provide us with instances which enable us to grasp the core of their cinematic explorations, as well as diverse aspects of aesthetics, politics, and themes in South Korean cinema, from its Golden Age of the 1960s to the present.

Claire Denis

26803
FNDL 26803. FREN 26803
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
D. Bluher

Claire Denis is one of the major artistic voices in contemporary French cinema, and one of the most challenging filmmakers working today. In over 25 years, she has created an impressive body of work from across a wide variety of genres ranging from semi-autobiographical films informed by her own experiences during her childhood in Africa (Chocolat, White Material) to allegorical horror films (Trouble Every Day). Currently she is working on her first English language science-fiction film High-Life.  I Can’t Sleep is based on the true story of Thierry Paulin, a gay, black, HIV-positive, transvestite and serial killer. Her best-known film to date Beau Travail is loosely inspired by Herman Melville’s Billy Budd, and The Intruder by the homonymous autobiographical essay by French philosopher Jean-Luc Nancy. We will also have a look at her lesser known films for television, her documentaries about dance and music, and her short films. Her films reflect a deep awareness of the complexities of French post-colonialism, as well as mesmerizing and sensual mise-en-scène of desire. 

Students taking the class for French credit are expected to complete written assignments (and readings as applicable) in French.

Senior Colloquium

29800
  • Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
J. Stewart

This seminar is designed to provide fourth-year students with a sense of the variety of methods and approaches in the field (e.g., formal analysis, cultural history, industrial history, reception studies, psychoanalysis). Students present material related to their BA project, which is discussed in relation to the issues of the course.

African American Cinema 1900 to 1950

21019
31019
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
A. Field

In this course, we will look at early African American filmmaking practices from their emergence in the 1910s, through the rise of Race film, up to the immediate post-WWII period. We will approach this body of work with regards to specific contexts of production, distribution, exhibition, and reception—but also aspects of form and aesthetics. This includes issues of representation, the politics of early Black filmmaking, Black film criticism, and intersections with Hollywood. To explore these topics, we will look at a range of film forms including theatrical, nontheatrical, religious, sponsored, educational, and various fiction genres such as comedy, melodrama, and the western. Emphasis will also be on the historiography of African American film, issues of methodology, and the possibilities and limits of the archive. Filmmakers and film companies include: William Foster, George Broome, George and Noble Johnson, Richard D. Maurice, Norman Film Manufacturing Company, Oscar Micheaux, Spencer Williams, Colored Players Film Corporation, James and Eloyce Gist, Zora Neale Hurston, and S.S. Jones.

Documentary Production 1

23930
33930
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
J. Hoffman

Documentary Video Production focuses on the making of independent documentary video.  Examples of Direct Cinema, Cinéma Vérité, the Essay, Ethnographic film, the Diary, Historical and Biographical film, Agitprop/Activist forms, and Guerilla Television, will be screened and discussed. Issues embedded in the documentary genre, such as the ethics and politics of representation and the shifting lines between documentary and fiction will be explored. Pre-production strategies and production techniques will be taught, including the camera, interviews and sound recording, shooting in available light, working in crews, and post-production editing.  Students be expected to purchase a portable firewire. A five-minute string-out/rough-cut will be screened at the end of the quarter. Students are encouraged to take Doc Production 2 to complete their work.

Issues in Contemporary Horror

25503
35503
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
J. Lastra

This course takes the modern horror film as its object.  For the purposes of this class, modern horror spans the period from 1960 to the present, although much of our attention will be directed toward the period form the 1980s to the present.  We will examine key problems in the genre including, but not limited to an examination of the nature of the horrific, close formal analysis (which typically is neglected in favor of more culturally oriented approaches), questions of POV and camera movement, the articulation and construction of space, the role of gender in the genre, the changing importance of women as performers, characters, directors, and spectators, found footage/surveillance, and the genre’s address to the viewer.

Alternate Reality Games: Theory and Production

25954
35954
BPRO 28700
  • Graduate/Undergraduate
  • Autumn
  • 2016-2017
P. Jagoda and H. Coleman

This experimental course explores the emerging genre of “alternate reality” or “transmedia” gaming.  Throughout the quarter, we will approach new media theory through the history, aesthetics, and design of transmedia games. For all of their novelty, these games build on the narrative strategies of novels, the performative role-playing of theater, the branching techniques of electronic literature, the procedural qualities of videogames, and the team dynamics of sports. Beyond the subject matter, this course is a springboard for transforming the 2017 orientation for the incoming class of approximately 1,500 first-year students into an Alternate Reality Game. Students in this course, thus, will not only be learning how to design a game but also contributing directly to the research and construction of this large-scale project. Building on this interdisciplinary research, we intend to design the University of Chicago orientation as a game that might help undergraduate students acclimate to the university setting and develop capacities linked to collaboration, leadership, and twenty-first century literacies. In particular, we are interested in discovering how interactive and participatory learning methods, which are central to the form of games, might help university students discuss and better understand complicated issues of inclusivity, diversity, and safety.

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