Courses / Undergraduate

Fall 2023

  • Special Topics in Film – Cinema and Wonder

    170 001 | CCN: 24532

    Jaimie Rachel Baron

    Location: Dwinelle 188

    Date and Time: M, W 8:00am - 9:29am

    4 Units

    Many who first encountered cinema in its early days were filled with wonder at the sight of moving images of the “real,” at the unprecedented capture and preservation of “time itself.” Although we have become habituated to moving images, the cinema still opens onto the possibility of experiencing a sense of wonder. But what is wonder? Why might people seek it and what might we learn from it? What can cinema tell us about the human desire for wonder, the act of wondering, the activation of wonder? Drawing on both philosophies of wonder and media theory, this course will examine different ways in which films may represent, enact, and/or activate wonder and explore the political, ethical, and epistemological stakes of wondering. Films will include scientific films, science fiction films, fantastical films, experimental films, and documentaries, including works by Souleymane Cissé, Janie Geiser, Werner Herzog, Jean Painleve, Hirokazu Koreeda, and Alex Garland, among others.