The Course run first half of the Semester.

 

The Course can be combined with Post Colonial Perspectives on Audiovisual Media 15 credits

 

Course description:

Why is it funny when men dress as women in the movies but not so much the other way around? Are contemporary images of sexually liberated women a sign of equality or a new form of oppression? What is behind the recent “trend” of gay, lesbian and transgender themes in the media? Why do so many television programs and films seem obsessed with beauty and body management?

Moving Images and Gender addresses these and many other questions concerning gender, sexuality and body issues in audiovisual imageries of the present and the past. Focusing on feminist film and media theories, the course offers tools to unravel hierarchies behind the seemingly self-evident gender settings in the media, but it also explores how gendered and sexual conventions could be challenged in moving images and in our ways of looking at them. In particular, questions of gendered viewing pleasure and politics are at the core of the course: what draws us towards some images and pushes us away from others, and how encounters with moving images affect our ways of looking at and valuing ourselves and others.

During the course, we will examine some important discussions in feminist studies of audiovisual media, such as the anti- and pro-pornography debates, challenges of queer studies, gendered body ideals, intersections of gender, class and “race”, and the issue of post-feminism. The examples also span over a wide terrain of media, from comedy to horror, from action to romance, from makeover television to melodrama.

Along with media viewings that range across various audiovisual genres and forms, the course consists of lectures (in English), reading assignments, discussions on literature and viewings (in English), and writing assignments (in English or Swedish) throughout the course.

Study goals:

After the course, students are expected to be able to
- Understand and critically reflect on introduced central concepts, such as gender, sexuality, class, “race”, post-feminism, body politics, queer cinema, and gendered spectatorship.
- Describe, evaluate and participate in debates around genres or narrative forms which have been important in feminist media studies, such as pornography, soap opera/melodrama, romance, comedy, reality television, and horror.
- Contextualize debates and moving image material within broader frameworks.
- Apply learned concepts and approaches to independent critical analysis of gender in moving images.

Assessment, examination and grading:

During the course, students will read the texts in the obligatory course reading list (reading assignments for each week will be given) and participate in lectures, seminar discussions and film/television viewings. They should be able to critically discuss themes and questions in the reading and lecture material during class and apply these discussions to analysis of the viewings. In addition to active participation, the course will be examined through analytical writing assignments on reading material, screenings and other moving image material, and an online group assignment.

a. The viewing of film, television and other media throughout the programme is mandatory and will be assessed on par with course literature. Written assignments should be word processed and students should be able to present them electronically. Genuine Text may be used to protect against plagiarism. Cases of suspected cheating, such as plagiarism, will be reported to the University’s Disciplinary Committee by the departmental chair or director of studies.

b. Grades are awarded on a seven-point assessment scale:
A = Excellent
B = Very good
C = Good
D = Satisfactory
E = Poor
Fx = Inadequate
F = Unacceptable

c. Assessment criteria will be circulated at the start of the course.

d. The final grade for the whole course must be at least E to pass.

e. Students who fail a course with grade Fx or F have the right to undertake four additional assessments, so long as courses continue to run, to achieve a pass grade. Students who receive grade E cannot repeat an assessment in order to attain a higher grade. Students who receive grade Fx or F for a course on two occasions by one and the same examiner have the right to request that another examiner be appointed to consider the grade, if there is no particular reason that excludes such action. A formal request concerning change of examiner shall be submitted to the departmental board.