CMS 297 A: Special Topics in Cinema and Media Studies

Autumn 2024
Meeting:
MW 2:30pm - 4:20pm / CDH 115
SLN:
23755
Section Type:
Lecture
Joint Sections:
CHID 250 C
Instructor:
THIS COURSE INTERROGATES THE PERVASIVENESS, POWER AND MEANING OF IMAGES IN EVERYDAY LIFE. IT INTRODUCES STUDENTS TO THE FIELD O STUDY CALLED VISUAL CULTURE THAT EXAMINES IMAGES AS REPRESENTATIONS,
Syllabus Description (from Canvas):

CROSS-LISTED WITH CMS 297 A

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THE POWER OF IMAGES: A CROSS-CULTURAL INTRODUCTION TO VISUAL CULTURE

INSTRUCTOR: SUDHIR MAHADEVAN

ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, COMPARATIVE HISTORY OF IDEAS/CINEMA AND MEDIA STUDIES

In this course, we study the power of images by assuming that images are alive. Images can be spectacular or banal, appearing in form according to long-established norms, or as raw records of perception. They can circulate en masse through media in vast numbers, or stand solitary, as revered objects on museum walls. Images can seem to embody their prototypes, the gods they depict, inviting worship. By the same token, they can enrage, provoking vandalism or destruction. We seek to understand the sources of their power, and their ability to move us into thought, feeling, and action. What do images want from us? What concepts, histories, and frameworks might explain their power as they play vital roles in shaping conceptions of self, citizenship, gender, society, or event?

Each week, across four modules (Ideas, Technologies, Genres, and Themes), we study images cross-culturally, balancing readings from the North Atlantic context with those from South Asia.

Course work includes assigned final essay prompts and  brief reading summaries, image analyses, and discussion posts.

Students will learn to:

Describe, analyze, and interpret images and visual forms as products of different cultural and historical contexts.

Identify the visual conventions, styles and norms that characterize images in different genres, such as photojournalism and documentary photography, painting, digital selfies, or advertising and publicity.

Summarize and critically assess arguments about the meaning and function of images produced in various visual forms and cultural contexts.

Define key concepts in the field such as visuality, perspective, spectatorship, reception, the gaze, or indexicality.

Apply the critical vocabulary from the readings in their own writing for this course.

Write short essays that develop a framework of relevant scholarly questions for assigned audiovisual texts or images.

 

 

Catalog Description:
Varied topics related to film and/or media. Offered: AWSpS.
GE Requirements Met:
Arts and Humanities (A&H)
Credits:
5.0
Status:
Active
Last updated:
July 11, 2024 - 7:40 am