Courses / Undergraduate

Spring 2024

  • Documentary Forms

    125 001 | CCN: 22795

    Natalia Brizuela

    Location: Dwinelle 142

    Date and Time: TU, TH 3:30pm - 4:59pm

    4 Units

    This course surveys histories, theories and practices of documentary forms, aka “non-fiction/“nonfiction” in photography, film, video and art. We will explore this term and examine the ways its forms and ethics have changed from the 19th century to the present. We begin by asking what a document is and what are the “documentary forms” of a given
    medium and questioning relationships between fact and fiction. In engaging these questions, we will examine some of the major modes of documentary photography, documentary filmmaking (including ethnographic film, cinema verité, direct cinema) and the presence of non-fiction/nonfiction in modern and contemporary art. Through formal
    analysis, we will examine the “reality effects” of these works focusing on their narrative structures and the ways in which they make meaning. In addition, we explore some of the theoretical questions that constantly surround this most philosophical of genres: How do these works shape notions of truth, reality and point of view? What are the ethics and politics of representation, and who speaks for whom in documentary forms?