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SMITH COLLEGE COURSES OF STUDY
ACADEMIC YEAR 2012-2013

This site contains the Courses of Study offered by Smith College, Five-College Faculty Course Offerings, and Five-College Certificate Programs. The Smith College Courses of Study details course offerings, instructors, requirements for the majors and minors, and degree requirements.

The information contained in the Courses of Study documents is accurate as of August 2012. Smith College reserves the right to make changes to the Courses of Study, including changes in its course offerings, instructors, requirements for the majors and minors, and degree requirements. Course information contained herein is compiled by the Office of the Provost/Dean of the Faculty from data submitted by departments and programs. All data listed is as officially and formally approved by the Office of the Provost/Dean of the Faculty, the Committee on Academic Priorities, and the faculty-at-large. Additional information may be available on the individual Web sites of departments and programs.

Film Studies



Film Studies


__________________________


Associate Professor

†1 Alexandra Keller, Ph.D.


McPherson Post-Doctoral Fellow

Jennifer Malkowski, Ph.D.


Assistant Professor

Bernadine Mellis, M.F.A. (Five College Visiting Artist of Film and Video Production)


Lecturer

Lokeilani Kaimana, M.A.


Advisers

†1 Anna Botta, Professor of Italian Language and Literature and of Comparative Literature

†1 Dawn Fulton, Associate Professor of French Studies

†1 Jefferson Hunter, Professor of English Language and Literature and of Film Studies

†1 Alexandra Keller, Associate Professor of Film Studies

*2 Barbara Kellum, Professor of Art

Daniel Kramer, Assistant Professor of Theatre

Richard Millington, Professor of English Language and Literature

Fraser Stables, Associate Professor of Art

†1 Frazer Ward, Associate Professor of Art

**2 Joel Westerdale, Assistant Professor of German Studies

_________________________


150 Introduction to Film Studies

This course offers an overview of cinema as an artistic, industrial, ideological and social force. Students will become familiar with the aesthetic elements of cinema (visual style, editing, cinematography, sound, performance, narration and formal structure, etc.), the terminology of film production, and the relations among industrial, ideological, artistic and social issues. Films (both classic and contemporary, mainstream and experimental) will be discussed from aesthetic, historical and social perspectives, enabling students to approach films as informed and critical viewers. Enrollment limited to 60. Priority given to Smith College film studies minors and Five College film studies majors. Formerly FLS 150. {A} 4 credits

Jennifer Malkowski

Offered Fall 2012


241 Genre/Period

Topic: Screwball Comedy. Classic screwball comedies were produced in a ten-year period, from Capra’s It Happened One Night (1934) to Sturges’s Miracle at Morgan’s Creek (1944). The class will screen 20 films from these years, although it will include a few later films: Wilder’s Some Like It Hot (1959), Mann’s Lover Come Back (1962) and the Coen Brothers’ Intolerable Cruelty (2003). We will examine the genre in its historical context and examine elements of the system studios, writers, producers, clothes and set designers, actors that produced this astonishingly witty and short-lived film genre. (E) {A} 4 credits

Margaret Bruzelius

Offered Fall 2012


250 Queer Cinema/Queer Media

From the queer avant-garde of Kenneth Anger and Su Friedrich, to The Kids are Alright and Glee, the queer in film and television is often conflated with gay and lesbian representation on screen. Instead of collapsing queer cinema into a representational politics of gay and lesbian film and television, we look at theories and practices that uphold what queerness means in a contemporary framework of American neoliberalism and transnational media. Screenings include the New Queer Cinema classics Paris Is Burning, It Wasn’t Love and Poison, and work by multimedia artists including Shu Lea Cheang, Issac Julien, Carmelita Tropicana and PJ Raval. Readings by Alexander Doty, Thomas Elsaesser, Kobena Mercer, Jasbir Puar, B. Ruby Rich, Judith Halberstam, José E. Muñoz’s, Chris Straayer and Hayden White.

Lokeilani Kaimana

Offered Spring 2013


255/ARS 280 Film and Art History (C)

Topic: Swords and S(c)andals: Ancient Rome in Film.

Since the beginning of cinema, the decadence of the ancient Romans has been a subject of fascination. Starting with HBO’s Rome (2005–07) and Ridley Scott’s Gladiator (2000), we’ll explore the multiple sources of the visual tropes used to construct this universe and seek to analyze it in aesthetic, historical and ideological terms. Their 20th-century counterparts from films of the silent era to Hollywood epics like Spartacus (1960) and Cleopatra (1963) as well as cult classics like Caligula (1979) will be scrutinized in order to gain an understanding of how the Romans functioned cinematically as cultural signs in varying historical contexts. Enrollment limited to 20. {A/H} 4 credits

Barbara Kellum

Offered Spring 2013


260 New Media and Participatory Culture

Among the theoretical claims made for the newness of new media, one of the most central is that new media are interactive, turning passive consumers into active, engaged participants. Such participants can shoot and edit their own movies with digital tools, write online critiques of their favorite TV shows to influence other fans and even the shows’ creators, or rally support for a political cause by posting activist videos on YouTube. This course will explore the shape of this technologically-enabled “participatory culture,” its impact on American culture, and cracks in the foundation of the “digital utopia.” Enrollment limit: 20. 4 credits

Jennifer Malkowski

Offered Spring 2013


280 Introduction to Video Production

Topic: First Person Documentary. This course provides a foundation in the principles, techniques, and equipment involved in making short videos. In it, students will make short documentary films from the first-person point of view. We will use our own stories as material, but we will look beyond self-expression, using video to explore places where our lives intersect with larger historical, economic, environmental, or social forces. We will develop our own voices while learning the vocabulary of moving images and gaining production and post-production technical training. Through in-class critiques, screenings, readings and discussion, students will explore the aesthetics and practice of the moving image while developing their own original projects. Prerequisite: Introduction to Film Studies. Application and permission of instructor required. Enrollment limited to 12. {A} 4 credits

Bernadine Mellis

Offered Fall 2012


351 Film Theory

This upper-level seminar explores central currents in film theory. Among the ideas, movements and concepts we will examine: formalist, realist, structuralist, psychoanalytic, feminist, and poststructuralist theories, and auteur, genre, queer and cultural studies approaches to questions regarding the nature, function, and possibilities of cinema. We will also consider how new media and new media theories relate to our experience in film and film theory. We will understand film theory readings through the socio-cultural context in which they were and are developed. We will also be particularly attentive to the history of film theory: how theories exist in conversation with each other, as well as how other intellectual and cultural theories influence the development, nature and mission of theories of the moving image. We will emphasize written texts (Bazin, Eisenstein, Kracauer, Vertov, Metz, Mulvey, DeLauretis, Doty, Hall, Cahiers du Cinema, the Dogme Collective, Manovich, etc.), but will also look at instantiations of film theory that are themselves acts of cinema (Man with a Movie Camera, Rock Hudson’s Home Movies, The Meeting of Two Queens). The course is designed as an advanced introduction and assumes no prior exposure to film theory. Fulfills the film theory requirement for the major and minor. Enrollment limited to 12. Prerequisite: FLS 150 or the equivalent. Priority given to Smith College film studies minors and Five College film studies majors. Priority given to seniors, then juniors. {A} 4 credits

Lokelani Kaimana

Offered Spring 2013


400 Special Studies

1–4 credits

Offered both semesters each year


Crosslisted Courses


ARH 280 Film and Art History (C)

Topic: Swords and S(c)andals: Ancient Rome in Film

Barbara Kellum

Offered Spring 2013


FRN 252 French Cinema: Paris on Screen

Martine Gantrel

Offered Spring 2013


FYS 119 Performance and Film Criticism

Kiki Gounaridou

Offered Fall 2012


FYS 175 Love Stories

Ambreen Hai

Offered Fall 2012


GER 231 Topics in German Cinema

Topic: Nazi Cinema

Joel Westerdale

Offered Fall 2012


THE 242 Acting II

Topic: Acting and Directing Actors for the Camera

Daniel Elihu Kramer

Offered Spring 2013


THE 318 Movements in Design

Topic: Production Design for Film

Edward Check

Offered Spring 2013


THE 361 Screenwriting

Andrea Hairston

Offered Spring 2013


THE 362 Screenwriting

Andrea Hairston

Offered Spring 2013


Five College Film Studies Major


The Five College Film Studies major is in film studies as opposed to film production. While the film faculty believes that all students should be familiar with film and video production, the major is not designed to train students to enter the film industry without further training. As with all liberal arts majors, film is studied in relation to all the arts, humanities, and social sciences, and can lead to careers in teaching, arts administration, web design, or freelance work in non-industry venues. The major is comprised of ten courses, one of which may be a component course. (A core course is one in which film is the primary object of study; a component course is one in which film is significant but not the focus of the course.) Of these ten courses, at least two (but no more than five) must be taken outside the home institution. In addition, each student must have an adviser on the home campus and the requirements for the major may vary slightly from campus to campus.


Program of Study:

1. Introduction to Film (must be taken on the home campus)

2. One film history course (either a general, one-semester survey or a course covering approximately fifty years of international film history)

3. One film theory course

4. One film genre or authorship course (generally on a single director or

or group of directors)

5. One national or transnational cinema course

6. One special topics course (may be a component course)

7. One advanced seminar in a special topic 

8. One film, video, or digital production course, or a screenwriting course; but no more than two such courses may be counted toward the major.

9. Two electives from any of the above categories


A thesis is optional; students should check with their home campus adviser.


In the course of fulfilling the program of study, at least one course must focus on non-narrative film (documentary or experimental) and at least four courses should be at the advanced level. Courses can fit into more than one category, but a single course may not be used to satisfy two of the numbered requirements above.


Smith College Advisers

Alexandra Keller, Director, Film Studies Program

Anna Botta, Italian Language and Literature

Dawn Fulton, Department of French Studies

Jefferson Hunter, Department of English Language and Literature

Barbara Kellum, Department of Art

Daniel Kramer, Department of Theatre

Rick Millington, Department of English Language and Literature

Fraser Stables, Department of Art

Frazer Ward, Department of Art

Joel Westerdale, Department of German Studies


The Minor


The Film Studies Program provides the opportunity for in-depth study of the history, theory, and criticism of film and other forms of the moving image. Our goal is to expose students to a range of cinematic works, styles and movements and to help them understand the medium’s significance as an art form, as a technology, as a means of cultural and political expression, and as symptomatic of social ideologies.


Requirements: Six semester courses to be taken at Smith or, by permission of the director, elsewhere among the Five College institutions.


Required courses:

FLS 150 Introduction to Film Studies

FLS 351 Film Theory



Smith College Advisers

Anna Botta, Professor of Italian Language and Literature

Dawn Fulton, Associate Professor of French Studies

Jefferson Hunter, Professor of English Language and Literature

Alexandra Keller, Associate Professor of Film Studies, Director

Barbara Kellum, Professor of Art

Daniel Kramer, Assistant Professor of Theatre

Richard Millington, Professor of English Language and Literature

Fraser Stables, Assistant Professor of Art

Frazer Ward, Associate Professor of Art

Joel Westerdale, Assistant Professor of German Studies


Honors


Director: Barbara Kellum


430d Honors Project

A thesis on a film studies topic, or a creative project. 8 credits

Members of the department

Full-year course; offered every year


Please consult the director of honors or the departmental Web site for specific requirements and application procedures.

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