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Women/Gender, Race and Sexuality in Film: History and Theory

Advanced—Year

This yearlong seminar analyzes the representation of gender, race, sexuality, and class in cinema from its origins to the present. Students develop critical understandings of film not only as part of American cultural/social history but also as political vehicles for activism and change. We study movies as part of historical  processes and assess interpretations that are often rooted in feminist, sociopolitical and postcolonial theories. A variety of film selections will be discussed: early motion pictures, action/adventure, classical Hollywood, early and contemporary Afro-American cinema, avant-garde, film noir, second-wave feminist film, documentary, queer cinema, global cinema, masculine genre, ethnic film, and fantasy/horror genres.