New, Revised, and Special Topics Courses (Fall 2023)

Note about overlapping courses

While some PMA instructors will allow students to enroll in classes that overlap, not all do. If your proposed Fall 2023 schedule includes overlaps, please consult with the faculty in question before enrolling so that you can adjust your enrollment plans if necessary.

PMA 3464 - Representational Ethics in Film and Television

Instructor: Kristen Warner 

Class Schedule: Mondays, 1:25 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.

This course is designed to explore the varied ways that race and gender intersect with the media industry. While common industrial logic suggests these descriptors of identity are not a factor in terms of its business models and assumptions, the reality is much more complex. Race, as well as gender, class, and sexuality, play large parts in how media industries function and in informing and shaping audience (that is, yours and mine) expectations and assumptions. Thus, the time spent in class will largely consist of deconstructing a number of media industries, including film, television and new media to show just how race operates within it. At course’s end, my expectation is that your critical reasoning will be sharpened, your ability to assess how industries use race--explicitly or not--will be strengthened, and your own responsibility to become ethical content creators will become realized. Full details here.

PMA 3580 - Cinematography and Visual Storytelling

Instructor: Doo Rim Kim

Class Schedule: Thursdays, 8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

Filmmaking is the art of using a variety of visual elements to convey a story, including lighting, camera movements, frame composition, color palette, etc. This course aims to explore both technical knowledge and artistic interpretation while introducing fundamental concepts of photos, moving picture, and cinematography. In this class, we'll make and talk about the idea of visual strategies in filmmaking, the basic components of cameras and lighting, and research on the most recent advances in digital cinematography.

PMA 3609/1611 - Fall 2023 "Desdemona" by Toni Morrison

Instructor: Beth F. Milles

Class schedule: one meeting per week, followed by five weeks of rehearsal and public presentation 

Toni Morrison's 2011 work "Desdemona" is a poetic, collaborative response to the work of Shakespeare's "Othello." This work interrogates femininity, issues of gender and race, displacement, domestic abuse, and the afterlife. It is a complexly interwoven text presenting myriad opportunities for research and artistic discovery around iteration, generation, the source material, and the haunting musical score by Malian singer-songwriter Rokia Traoré. 

Students will examine text as dramaturgical researchers and work collaboratively to examine the initiating context surrounding performance, design, geographic, and local/emotional displacement. 

We will be presenting "Desdemona" to the public during a fall weekend, at the very end of October or in November. We will meet once a week at the beginning of the semester, and then there will be a 5-week rehearsal process leading up to the performance. Students participating in the presentation will rehearse four days a week for 3 hours. 

All students in 3609 will investigate the history and background of Toni Morrison's "Desdemona." 

Please reach out to Beth Milles (bfm6) for further information. 

PMA 4711/6711 - Camp: Aesthetics and Politics

Instructor: Nick Salvato

Class schedule: Thursdays, 2:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Camp is one of the predominant, organizing aesthetic structures of the twentieth century and continues to make important impacts in the twenty-first. With attention to a range of historical, philosophical, and theoretical texts, coupled with a range of artistic artifacts and phenomena, we will develop a clustered set of working definitions of camp as we also challenge some truisms about the concept: that it is or has been apolitical; that its comprehension can be disarticulated from queer cultures and experiences; that it has died and is dead. Paying close attention to systems of sex, gender, and sexuality, we will also explore their inextricable intersection with such categories of identity, relationality, and sociality as (dis)ability, age, class, ethnicity, and race. Full details here.

PMA 4835/6835 - Performance Studies: Theories & Methods

Instructor: Christine B Balance

Class schedule: Tuesdays, 1:25 p.m. - 4:45 p.m.

An understanding of performance as object and lens, modality and method, is integral to scholarship and research across the humanities and social sciences. Charting the advent and defining principles of performance studies, this course explores the interdisciplinary history of the field, including its association with anthropology, visual studies, theater, gender studies, sociology, psychology, literature, philosophy, and critical race studies. This class examines performance as a means of creative expression, a mode of critical inquiry, and an avenue for public engagement. We will attend to both the practice of performance – as gesture, behavior, habit, event, artistic expression, and social drama – and the study of performance – through ethnographic observation, spectatorship, documentation, reproduction, analysis, and writing strategies. Through a study of research paradigms and key issues related to performance, we will explore not only what this highly contested term “is” and “does,” but when and how, for whom, and under what circumstances. Full details here.

PMA 6021 - Research Methods in PMA

Instructor: Kristen Warner 

Wednesdays, 1:25 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. 

There are three primary objectives to the course: First, we will survey several qualitative research methods employed by media studies scholars including historiography, discourse analysis, ethnography, interviewing, and more. We will assess how such methods can be employed in the study of media industries, texts, and audiences. Students will be asked to undertake a series of assignments through which they apply and critique various methodologies as well as workshop ideas about possible projects they might undertake. Second, we will engage in several question-and-answer sessions about methodology and research strategies with a variety of scholars. Third, students will be asked to build on our semester-long survey of methodological challenges, concerns, and practices by developing their own research proposals that factor in the potential ethical, political, and logistical challenges involved in undertaking different types of research. Full details here.