This course is designed to give graduate students a basic grounding in the theory, history and criticism of cinema and media studies, and introduce them to central debates, topics, and methods in the field. The central objectives of the course include familiarizing class participants with the:
- theories most germane to film and media critics since the early 20th century
- methods and problems of textual analysis and interpretation of films
- representative cannon of films and related media texts from an array of national industries, avant-garde movements, and historical periods
- historical and cultural paradigms as they relate to film and media studies (mass culture/modernity/postmodernity/postcoloniality, etc.)
In order to achieve these goals, this seminar meets twice a week. One session each week will be devoted primarily to discussion of theoretical, methodological and historical readings. The second session will be devoted primarily to screening the "feature" film(s) of the week, although the screening session will often begin with a series of clips or excerpts from an array of films or a series of short films, and these presentations will foster techniques for assessing and teaching film‘s many formal and stylistic registers: editing, cinematography, sound, mise-en-scene, etc, in a historical context.