Courses / Graduate

Fall 2019

  • Graduate Film Historiography

    201 | CCN: 31539

    Kristen Whissel

    4 Units

    Fri. 1:00pm-4:00pm, Dwinelle 226; lab Fri. 11:00am-1:00pm, Dwinelle 226 ///

    This course investigates a range of methodologies and approaches for writing film and media history from the perspective of technological and historical change. Each week we will focus on recent examples of historiography that engage with, historicize, and theorize media emergence, transformation, and (in some instances) obsolescence. In the process we will focus on historical periods often regarded as transitional and/or the emergence of new media/technologies/formats/platforms, including the emergence of photography and stereography, silent cinema’s transitional era (1908-1916), the transition to synchronous film sound, the rise of television in the late 1940s and 1950s, the shift to widescreen and color film in Hollywood cinema, the brief life of VHS, the emergence of new digital media, the cinema’s digital turn, media convergence, and the return of 3D. Each week we will address one or more methodological approaches to writing media history (i.e. social histories of the remote control; phenomenological approaches to 3D cinema and media) and the various questions about the practice of film and media historiography raised by both. At the same time, this course will provide the opportunity for graduate students to develop a detailed and nuanced knowledge of film and media history.