Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


SOCIOLOGY OF CINEMA
SOCIOLOGIA DEL CINEMA

Cinema, Audiences and Politics of Representation
Cinema, audience e politica della rappresentazione

A.Y. Credits
2021/2022 6
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Dominic Francis Graham Holdaway Tuesday 16.00-17.00 and Wednesday 15.00-16.00, though please email in advance to confirm.
Teaching in foreign languages
Course partially taught in a foreign language English
This course is taught partially in Italian and partially in a foreign language. Study materials can be provided in the foreign language and the final exam can be taken in the foreign language.

Assigned to the Degree Course

Communication Sciences (L-20)
Curriculum: PERCORSO COMUNE
Date Time Classroom / Location
Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

The aim of this course is to introduce the study of cinema within its social context: in other words, we will think through, on the one hand, who watches films (the audience as a concept and how to study it), and, on the other, what films tell us about its own context at large (cinema as a cultural phenomenon and a reflection of contemporary politics of representation).

To do this, the course will first introduce a series of key concepts and tools, drawn from audience studies, cultural studies, and the sociology of cinema. Having established these, the course will then turn to a set of contemporary case studies, examining the consumption and uses of a handful of recent films. The case studies will be grouped around specific identities, and the discourses surrounding them in the present.

This course will be taught in two languages: the first part of the course will be taught in Italian; the final section on case studies will be taught in English.

Program

The course will be divided into two sections, one theoretical and the other an analysis of case studies.

The first, theoretical section will present and illustrate (with examples) a series of analytical models, considering:

  • The audience as a theoretical and practical concept
  • The reception and consumption of films
  • Interpretation
  • Fandom and interpretative communities
  • Representation

The second section, taught in English, will be devoted to case studies, will revolve around a series of important identity categories, and examine one or two films that represent them. In each case, we will look at two films: one popular, another more openly political. The categories to be studied include:

  • Class
  • Race
  • Gender
  • Sexuality

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

1. Knowledge and understanding: students will obtain an advanged theoretical and practical understanding of the role played by cinema in society, and in paritcular of audiences, representation and interpretation.

1.1. Students will gain this understanding through lesson participation and through discussion of the course's themes, as well as through film analysis guided by the lecturer.

2. Applying knowledge and understanding: the knowledge obtained during this course will enable students to recognize and understand the most important theories of audience and cultural studies that are relevant to cinema.

2.1. Students will gain this ability in classes, in the guided analysis of films, and through discussions in small groups.

3. Making judgements: students will learn to express informed, autonomous judgments on the politics of audiovisual culture, and on the socio-historical processes that have influenced the production of some of the most important films of world cinema.

3.1. Students will gain the ability to make critical judgments through participation in discussions in class and debates with the lecturer and with their colleagues, as well as through personal study surrounding the lessons. 

4. Communication: students will learn to express themselves in Italian and in English on the course's themes.

4.1. They will develop this ability through class discussions and exchanges with colleagues, as well as the lecturer, in the classes, which will take place in part in Italian and in part in English.

5. Lifelong learning skills: students will learn to engage and interact with theories of cinema within society and in its own cultures, and in particular theories of audiences, reception and interpretation.

5.1. These abilities will be enabled through discussion and debate with classmates and the lecturer, as well as class exercises and personal study.

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

As well as lectures and discussions, films and clips will be screened during lessons

The materials used in class will be made available for students online, on the University's blended learning platform. 


Didactics, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment

Didactics

Lectures on theories of audiences and representation; projections, seminars and group discussions on the course's content and the films.

Attendance

Participation in at least 75% of the lessons

Course books
  • The content of the lessons (the slides will be made available to students online)
  • Mariagrazia Fanchi, L’audience. Storia e teoria, Laterza, 2014
  • Anamik Saha Race, Culture and Media, Sage, 2021, limitatamente all’introduzione (“Introduction: Race, Culture and Media”). This will be made available on Moodle.
  • Roxane Gay, Bad Feminist, Corsair, 2014, limitatamente ai capitoli “Feminism (n.): Plural”, “Girls, girls, girls”, “What we Hunger for”, “Thoughts on The Help”, “Surviving Django”, “Beyond the Struggle Narrative”, “When Less is More”.

Students must also watch the following films for the final part of the course:

  • Joker (Todd Phillips, 2019);
  • Parasite (Bong Joon-Ho, 2019);
  • Black Panther (Ryan Coogler, 2018);
  • Green Book (Peter Farrelly, 2018);
  • Ghostbusters (Paul Feig, 2016);
  • Promising Young Woman (Emerald Fennell, 2020);
  • Luca (Enrico Casarosa, 2021);
  • Tangerine (Sean Baker, 2015).
Assessment

Assessment for the course will consist in an individual oral exam. Students must demonstrate a fundamental understanding of the course's content through the study of texts and the analysis of audiovisual material. Class attendance is an integral part of the evaluation. The exam aims to assess both learning of the course content on behalf of the students and also their ability to express themselves, make argument and apply what they have learned.

Grading:

Excellent grades will be given in presence of: a good critical perspective and in depth knowledge; the ability to link the main subjects addressed during the course; the expert use of appropriate language and terminology.

Good grades will be given in presence of: good mnemonic knowledge of the course content; a relatively good critical perspective and the ability to connect its themes; the use of an appropriate language.

Sufficient grades will be given in presence of: minimal knowledge of the course's themes and the presence of some gaps in understanding; the use of an inappropriate language.

Low grades will be given in presence of: difficulty in understanding the course's topics; notable gaps in knowledge; the use of a clearly inappropriate language.

Additional Information for Non-Attending Students

Didactics

Personal study of the texts and films.

Course books
  • Mariagrazia Fanchi, L’audience. Storia e teoria, Laterza, 2014
  • Anamik Saha Race, Culture and Media, Sage, 2021, limitatamente all’introduzione (“Introduction: Race, Culture and Media”).
  • Roxane Gay, Bad Feminist, Corsair, 2014, limitatamente ai capitoli “Feminism (n.): Plural”, “Girls, girls, girls”, “What we Hunger for”, “Thoughts on The Help”, “Surviving Django”, “Beyond the Struggle Narrative”, “When Less is More”.

Non attending students must also prepare one of the following texts: 

  • James Procter, Stuart Hall e gli studi culturali, Cortina, 2007 (English version: Stuart Hall, Routledge, 2004).
  • Raymond Williams, Il dottor Caligari a Cambridge: cinema, dramma e classi popolari, Ombre corte, 2015;
  • Stuart Hall, "The Work of Representation", in Representation: Cultural Representations and Signifying Practices, Sage, 1997.
Assessment

Assessment for the course will consist in an individual oral exam. Students must demonstrate a fundamental understanding of the course's content through the study of texts and the analysis of audiovisual material. Class attendance is an integral part of the evaluation. The exam aims to assess both learning of the course content on behalf of the students and also their ability to express themselves, make argument and apply what they have learned.

Grading:

Excellent grades will be given in presence of: a good critical perspective and in depth knowledge; the ability to link the main subjects addressed during the course; the expert use of appropriate language and terminology.

Good grades will be given in presence of: good mnemonic knowledge of the course content; a relatively good critical perspective and the ability to connect its themes; the use of an appropriate language.

Sufficient grades will be given in presence of: minimal knowledge of the course's themes and the presence of some gaps in understanding; the use of an inappropriate language.

Low grades will be given in presence of: difficulty in understanding the course's topics; notable gaps in knowledge; the use of a clearly inappropriate language.

« back Last update: 27/07/2021

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