Courses for Spring 2017

These are the courses scheduled for Spring 2017 that count toward the Film & Media Studies minor. To determine whether other courses may count toward FAMS, please contact the director.

Art and Visual Technology 

AVT 377-001: Cyberpunk
4:30-7:10pm TR Art and Design Building 1007 Mark Cooley mcooley@gmu.ed | An exploration of cyberculture through analysis and critique of Cyberpunk literature and media. Assignments include readings, writings, discussions, film screenings, and creative projects (4 credits).


COMM 302-002 Foundations of Media Theory 
4:30-7:10pm W Planetary Hall 212 Richard Craig| Provides a comprehensive review of mass communication and media theory, focusing on media effects and the complex relationships between media producers, messages, technologies, and users/audiences. Examines role of media in news, politics, and popular culture.

COMM 302-003 Foundations of Media Theory 1:30-2:45 pm MW Robinson Hall B120 Richard Craig
COMM 302-DL1 Foundations of Media Theory
 Nader Chaaban
COMM 350-001 Mass Communication and Public Policy 12-1:15pm MW Planetary Hall 127 TBA
COMM 358-001 Multi-Camera Studio Production 7:20-10pm W David King Jr. Hall 1011B Louis Garcia de Quevedo

COMM 372 DL1 Sports and Media Rodger Smith

COMM 380-001 Media Criticism
 10:30-11:45am TR Nguyen Engineering Building 1108 Tim Gibson | The media and cultural industries are the most important and powerful storytellers in contemporary life. But what kinds of stories—including stories about race, gender, and sexuality—are told through commercial media and popular culture? How do these media images and narratives subtly shape how we understand our world? And what about digital media? How has the rise of digital networking changed not only how popular culture is produced and consumed, but our social relationships and interactions as well? In this class, we draw on a diverse range of theories and concepts to dissect popular media texts (including film, television, and online/remix culture), and we examine our relationship to the wider digital media environment. A special unit on the production and consumption of celebrity concludes the course.

COMM 380 DL1 Media Criticism David Miller | This asynchronous online course examines practical criticism of a wide variety of media texts including television programs, newspapers, articles, films, photographs, and advertisements. This course introduces principles of major contemporary modes of analysis for systematically interpreting visual and verbal forms of communication. This course is designed to enable students to formulate their own philosophies on the role of mass media-making and popular culture through the careful analysis of key theories of communication, the meaning and interpretation of media-making and the institutions that shape our social, political, economic, cultural and social values in a contemporary society.


English 318-001 Introduction to Cultural Studies 4:30-7:10pm T Robinson B218 Jessica Scarlata | Introduces interpretive practices associated with cultural studies.

English 371-001 Television Studies: TV+Twitter: 10:30-11:45am TR Robinson Hall B205 Cynthia Fuchs | This course looks at TV in multiple forms, as a cultural institution and commercial industry, as a means to tell stories and create art in shifting formats, with a focus on how social media are reshaping TV. We examine specific instances of genre, style, and medium, including webcasts, news, sports TV, as well as full or mini-series, reality TV, and soaps. At the same time, the course considers how content shapes narrative structures and practices, for instance, the effects of social media on TV watching as a collective and individual experience Programs may include Atlanta, Better Call Saul, blackish, Bojack Horseman, Fargo, Full Frontal, Jessica Jones, Mr. Robot, The Night Of, The O.A., Orphan Black, Queen Sugar, Scandal, Stranger Things, and Supergirl. Fulfills Core Requirement for Arts.

English 372-001 Introduction to Film 4:30-7:10pm W Enterprise Hall 80 Jessica Scarlata | Introduces film as an art form. Satisfies General Education requirement for arts.

English 373-001 Film and Video Forms: What's the risk? 9:-10:15am TR Robinson Hall A243 Cynthia Fuchs | The course considers how movies, videos, and TV tell stories. We think about how they construct subjects and position viewers, by creating convincing, emotionally potent "realities." Looking at how fiction films, documentaries, and television take on similar topics, we'll examine narrative and formal conventions, political and historical contexts, and the effects of budgets, technologies, and commercial culture. Movies and TV may include Cameraperson, Christine, Citizenfour, Ex Machina, The Fits, I Am Not Your Negro, Kate Plays Christine, Lemonade, Moonlight, O.J.: Made in America, Selma, 10 Cloverfield Lane, 13th, This Is Not a Film, and Under the Sun. Fulfills writing intensive requirement in English and FAVS.

Film and Video Studies

FAVS 225-001 History of World Cinema
 4:30-7:10pm W Exploratory Hall L003 Sam Meddis | This survey explores the development of world cinema from its beginnings in the late 19nth century to the 1990s. The course traces the evolution of language of cinema in order to connect the art of filmmaking with the "outside forces," including economic institutions, key figures, events and social issues.

FAVS 225-002 History of World Cinema 10:30am-1:10pm F Planetary Hall 224 Rob Farr 

FAVS 225-DL1 History of World Cinema
 KJ Mohr
FAVS 250: 001 Business of Film and Video 1:30-4:10pm F Art and Design Building 2026 Lisa Thrasher | This course provides an overview of the film industry from a business perspective. Students learn basic business practices, film financing, business plans, film distribution, and management and marketing techniques appropriate for the film industry.
FAVS 300-001 Global Horror Film 4:30-7:10pm M Robinson Hall B224 Teacher TBA | Taking a historical approach through various national and international cinemas, the course begins with horror film’s literary and theatrical origins and traces its development into modern and postmodern forms of storytelling. Fulfills Mason Core requirement in Global Understanding.

FAVS 352-001 Ethics of Film & Video 1:30-2:45pm TR Robinson Hall A101 Thomas Britt | Prerequisite(s): Completion or concurrent enrollment in all other required Mason Core courses and completion of 21 credits within the FAVS program. Fulfills Core Requirement for Synthesis; open to FAVS majors only. 

FAVS 399-001 Live Movies 4:30-7:10pm MW Art and Design Building 1007 Gail White | This course is based on the premise that newly devised intermedia performances (a.k.a. Live Movies) should resonate with the society for and in which they are created. Today’s media-savvy audiences might actively sustain a split focus on five things at once, but may disengage when asked to contemplate a single phenomenon in depth for an extended period of time. As photography shifted various codes and functions of painting and printmaking, so film and television have done with the live arts.

Modern and Classical Languages

ARAB 360-001 Arab Cinema: The Megacity 3- 4:15pm TR Aquia Building 347 Nathaniel Greenberg | The UN estimates the population in the Middle East and North Africa (M.E.N.A) will reach 430 million by 2020. 280 million, over 65%, are expected to live in urban environments. This course examines how filmmakers in the region have been grappling with this phenomenon and how film, as a medium, can illuminate the experience of social existence en masse. The class centers on key films about life in the region’s largest metropolises, engaging a range of social, political and aesthetic questions currently in play across the greater MENA region. The class is taught in English. No prior background required.

FRLN 331-001 International Mysteries 3-4:15pm TR Music/Theater Building 1002 Michael Jeck | Policier, serie noire, giallo, krimi, astinomika, suiri: arguably now the most universal of genres, the mystery, cop show, detective story, or thriller is also one of the most flexible and accommodating, providing the opportunity for stylistic pyrotechnics by great directors, the dramatization of classic stories and characters, and a specific window into other cultures. Students will discover these films' richly cinematic values, acquire critical reading skills, and, perhaps, gain a greater facility in spotting the killer. Films will include M, The Third Man, the Russian Sherlock HolmesHigh and Low, and the complete Finnish miniseries Raid. Taught in English. Fulfills Core Requirement for Global Understanding. 

FRLN 331-002 War and Film
 3-4:15pm MW Music/Theater Building 1002 Michael Jeck | The depiction of war is well fitted to film, with its capacity for full-scale re-enaction. This course considers films from around the world, from early silents to present day spectacles, from ancient warfare to Vietnam. Each film will be discussed in the context of the time in which it was made and the time it depicts, the object being the acquisition of a basic understanding of military history, and of critical skills, and particularly in regard to one of its most long-lasting, and least critically appreciated, genres. Films will include Alexander Nevsky, Kagemusha, Glory, Stalingrad, and Platoon. Taught in English. Fulfills Core Requirement for Global Understanding.

JAPA 320-001 Japanese Cinema
 5:55-7:10pm TR Nguyen Engineering Building 1103 Michael Jeck | This course aims for a very broad survey of one of the world’s richest cinemas, from the silent era to the relatively recent, touching on a wide range of genres and subjects, from lightning fast samurai action to the beautiful stillness of Ozu. It is a course on film, not Japanese culture through film, and the emphasis will be on discovering the particularly filmic values to be found in the works of some of the world’s greatest directors. Films include Late Spring, Godzilla, Samurai Rebellion, I Live in Fear, and Tampopo. Fulfills an elective for the BA in Global Affairs with the Asia concentration. 
SPAN 375:001 Introduction to Spanish-Language Film TR 10:30-11:45am T 1018 Lisa Rabin | This course is an introduction to understanding film art as it relates to the rich and diverse cinema history of Latin America. Conducted entirely in Spanish, the course focuses on students’ acquisition of knowledge on the material and principles of film form, or the basic elements of film narrative, mise-en-scène, editing, and sound. Students will be asked to watch closely and analyze major films produced across the Latin American regions in the 20th and 21st centuries, from Argentina to Chile to Bolivia to Chile to Brazil to Cuba to Mexico, including documentaries, musicals, comedies, thrillers, coming-of-age movies, and road films. We'll also look at the “New Latin American Cinema” of the 1960s and 1970s. We will also tackle film theory, historical film reception, and the role of cinema as a form of mass media.