This course will introduce students to the work of mainstream and experimental women filmmakers from around the world. As we examine films from the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries, we will consider how a counter-history of women's cinema alters more conventional versions of the medium's history, whether gender is a useful category of analysis for film studies, how women filmmakers have responded to each others' work, and how other markers of identity like race and class complicate utopian narratives of "sisters in cinema."
Section 401 - SEM
We may know what it is like to fall in love, but how do movies tell us what it is like? Through an exciting tour of American and World cinema, we will analyze the moods and swings, successes and failures of love in romantic comedy, one of the most popular but generally overlooked and taken for granted genres. We will turn a spotlight on it by examining what elements and iconography constitute the “romcom” genre, what specific qualities inform its sub-groupings such as screwball, sex comedy or radical romantic comedy, how they are related to their historical, cultural and ideological contexts, and what we can learn about their audiences. Watching classic as well contemporary examples of the genre, from City Lights (1931), It Happened One Night (1934) and Roman Holiday (1953), to Harold and Maude (1971), Annie Hall (1977), Chocolat (2000), and The Notebook (2004), we will problematize this overly-familiar cinema to make it new and strange again, and open it up to creative analysis. Assignments include a film-viewing journal, a critical film analysis and a creative final project.
TR 1030AM-1200PM
  • CINE202401
  • COML292401
  • ENGL292401