Current Course Details

Please check Albert or the Registrar's Office site for the most up-to-date class meeting times, locations, and call numbers. The courses will be open in Albert; there is no need to contact the Department directly. Albert wait lists will be available for all courses. Please email us with any additional questions.

Spring 2016

MCC-GE 2145 Methods in Interpreting Popular Culture
Professor: Charlton McIlwain
MTWR, 3:00-5:45 PM (January 4-22, 2016) | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: MA Research Course

PLEASE NOTE: This course is offered over the January term but will show up in the Spring 2016 course listings in Albert. 

Popular culture as both a producer and reflector of cultural meaning and a means of communication. Introduction to the fundamental theories and methods for understanding the construction of meaning in film, television, music, advertising and practices of everyday life, tracing the study of popular culture through film theory and mass media analysis to cultural studies.

MCC-GE 2030 Architecture as Media
Professor: Erica Robles
Tuesdays 2:00-4:10 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Technology and Society

This class reads architecture and the built environment through the lenses of media, communication, and culture. Through analyses of a range of spaces - from Gothic cathedrals to suburban shopping malls to homes, factories, skyscrapers and digital cities - students will acquire a vocabulary for relating representations and practices, symbols and structures, and for identifying the ideological and aesthetic positions that produce settings for everyday life.

MCC-GE 2129 New Media Research Studio
Professor: Finn Brunton
Mondays 2:00-4:10 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Technology and Society, MA Research Course

A project-based, research-intensive course that explores emerging practices and trends in new media with particular emphasis on interactive and immersive environments, such as social networking sites, multi-player online environments, the blogosphere, the open source movement, social activist groups, and Internet-based art. Students engage in a semester-long participatory research project using collaborative Web tools.

MCC-GE 2135 Media, Memory, and History
Professor: Marita Sturken

Tuesdays 2:00-4:10 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies

This course examines the relationship of visual media to historical narratives and cultural memory. It looks at photography, film, television, and forms of new media in relation to theories of historiography and cultural memory.

MCC-GE 2155 Activist Art and Creative Activism
Professor: Stephen Duncombe
Wednesdays 2:00-4:10 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Persuasion and Politics

The course will focus on the tactical, strategic, & organizational uses of artistic aesthetic taken up by the activist for the purpose of social change. The course will rely on both a survey of the existing theory & scholarship on “artistic activism,” as well as close analyses of contemporary practices on a local, national & global scale. Special attention will be paid to issues of creativity & efficacy, addressing questions concerning the value of this hybrid practice as both an aesthetic & political activity.

MCC-GE 2171 Screening History: American History in Hollywood
Professor: Brett Gary
Thursdays 4:55-7:25 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Persuasion and Politics

This course explores how popular Hollywood films construct versions of the historical past, & can be utilized as historical documents themselves. The films reach mass audiences, they entertain, they mythologize, they produce compelling narratives about the past, they simplify complex problems, & they have been influential in creating audiences’ historical understanding. Hollywood films are significant & complex cultural texts, & this course will study them as artifacts of a powerful communications entertainment industry whose visions of the past & arguments regarding social, political, economic order throughout the 20th century & into the 21st centuries warrants our close examination 

MCC-GE 2200 Media Events and Spectacle
Professor: Salvatore Fallica
Mondays 4:55-7:05 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Persuasion and Politics

This course examines the role played by media events and spectacle in the shaping of belief, attitudes, and actions, with particular attention paid to the concept of the masses and its changed meaning over time. The course examines concepts of mass culture, the decentralization of cultural forms, and the rise of convergence culture. It explores the history of the media event and the theories that have shaped it, and the role of spectacle in society from the Renaissance to modern society to the age of digital media.

MCC-GE 2201 Mediating the Bio-Political Body
Professor: Allen Feldman
Mondays 4:55-7:05 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Persuasion and Politics

This seminar treats the body as a bio-political medium and media as mimetic, cyborgian and visualized forms of flexible embodiment. We will explore the political encoding of bodies as a crucial, yet under-analyzed, mode of modern political communication encompassing the racialized, colonized, gendered, medicalized, technologicalized, disabled and terrorized body.

MCC-GE 2287 Global Youth Media
Professor: JoEllen Fisherkeller
Tuesdays 4:55-7:05 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Global and Transcultural Communication, Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Interaction and Social Processes

This course explores the contextual purposes, practices, and outcomes of youth media projects that use a variety of communication technologies in different locations around the world.  Students will examine research into why and how youth create and distribute multiple media in different locales, and investigate in what ways these activities support the development of young people’s capacities for 21st century skills of digital communication, critical literacy, civic engagement, media appreciation, and personal expression. 

MCC-GE 2290 Interpersonal Communication
Professor: Susan Fox
Tuesdays 7:10-9:20 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Interaction and Social Processes

The application of various systems of communication analysis to specific behavioral situations. Through case-study method, students apply communication theories and models to practical, everyday situations. 

MCC-GE 2344 Social Life of Paper
Professor: Lisa Gitelman
Wednesdays 10:00-12:45 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, Technology and Society

What is the cultural work performed by or with the technology of paper? How can history of paper supplement and enrich recent histories of printing technology and printed artifacts like 'the book'? What would it mean to imagine a paperless future? Organized around discussions of readings in common, this course considers the history, production, circulation and use of paper in the social production of knowledge, the shared imagination of value, and the mutual relations of consumers and commodities.

MCC-GE 2420 Visual Culture Methods
Professor: Nicholas Mirzoeff
Wednesdays 4:55-7:05 PM | 4 credits
MA Area of Study: Visual Culture and Cultural Studies, MA Research Course

This course is an introduction to the history and theory of vision and visuality, with a particular focus on research methods in the study of visual culture. The course focuses on the research methods and approaches specific to the field of visual culture and related fields of study, its scholarly literature, its theoretical genealogy, and the stakes in interdisciplinary research.

MCC-GE 3103 Semiotics
Professor: Lily Chumley
Tuesdays 2:00-4:50 PM | 4 credits
DOCTORAL Students Only

This course will explore semiotics & performance theory by comparing the modes of performance used in media (including television, film, radio, advertising, theater, music & visual art) with social performance in general. Readings will draw from classic & contemporary work in semiotics, performance theory & linguistic anthropology, analyzing media & art forms from around the world. Students will engage with the theoretical concepts & analytical models encountered in class by applying them to a media form, performance or piece of art of their own choosing.

MCC-GE 3150 Special Topics in Technology Studies
Professor: Helen Nissenbaum
Thursdays 2:00-4:50 PM | 4 credits
DOCTORAL Students Only

This umbrella course is designed for doctoral students on themes related to the social, cultural, historical, and political economic meanings and effects of communication technologies. Specific themes may include: digital media, social networking, intellectual property and issues of privacy, robotics and artificial intelligence, computer hacking, genetics and biocomputing, the business of new technology.

MCC-GE 3200 Doctoral Core Seminar II
Professor: Arvind Rajagopal
Wednesdays 2:00-4:50 PM | 4 credits
DOCTORAL Students Only

Advanced reading and discussion of the foundational literature, principles, and paradigms associated with the study of media, culture, and communication.

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