This course surveys African American cinema since the Civil Rights Era. We will consider longstanding debates about Black images in popular culture, Black access to the means of film production, distribution and exhibition, and the development of a Black film aesthetic. Films made by, about and for African Americans will be considered in light of Black nationalisms, affirmative action initiatives, Black Feminist and Queer art and activism, Black moviegoing and spectatorship practices, the emergence of video and digital technologies, hip hop culture, and “post-racial” discourse in the Age of Obama. The course will also consider developments in scholarship on race and cinema. Topics to be discussed include Blaxploitation, the L.A. Rebellion school of Black independent filmmakers (Charles Burnett, Julie Dash, Haile Gerima, Alile Sharon Larkin), “ghettocentric” films, Black romantic comedy, literary adaptation, documentary and experimental works, as well as the careers of artists including Melvin Van Peebles, Ossie Davis, Pam Grier, Eddie Murphy, Marlon Riggs, Oprah Winfrey, Spike Lee, Denzel Washington, Cheryl Dunye, Tyler Perry, Lee Daniels, and Ava DuVernay.
Pre-requisite(s): CMST 10100, ARTH 20000, ENGL 10800, ARTV 25300, or consent of instructor.