FLMS 300 – World Cinema Directed by Women
May 16 - June 17, 2022, Mondays-Fridays from 9:40-11:10 a.m.
(Fully online, synchronous, Group III Humanities and Writing Credit optional. New Fall 2022 students may register.)
Female film directors lack visibility as a result of the gender inequality that is still perpetuated in the film industry. This represents a potential gap in our understanding of human experience and it affects how women are portrayed in the real world. Stories tell us what societies value, they offer us lessons, and they share and preserve our history. No matter how many movies with original screenplays and state of the art technology have been recently produced, if the female point of view of reality is limited and reduced, then we continue reinforcing gender roles and gendered stereotypes and we are only exposed to half of the point of view of society.
This course aims at enriching the map of global cinema by giving visibility to female film directors that have actively contributed to the film industry and to the history of cinema. The goal is to move towards a much-needed representation of gender equity by studying these filmmakers’ cultural production as work that promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion. This class will also introduce students to some of the central debates within feminism from the 1970s onwards, with a focus on questions of female authorship within the broader cultural contexts of the feminist movement, gay, lesbian, and queer studies, and developments in the fields of race, class and post-colonial studies.
This course will also pay attention to how these female directors, having gained full awareness of the different forms of gender discrimination in the film industry in front of and behind the camera, are developing alternative modes of filming and representing. Some of the directors that we will include in the course are Lucía Puenzo (Argentina), Jane Campion (Australia), Kathryn Bigelow (US), Celine Sciamma (France), Sara Gómez (Cuba), Cheryl Dunye (US), Ava DuVernay, Marjane Sartrapi (Iran), and Miwa Nishikawa (Japan), among others.
- This course will give students the opportunity to explore local and global societies, languages, and cultures through a number of carefully selected movies directed by women.
- Students will familiarize themselves with a contemporary cultural production that features a broader presence of women directors and other female professionals behind the camera, and gain a deeper understanding of distinctive artistic techniques employed by them to advance their ideological goals.
- Students will learn about major historical developments, and they will gain a deeper understanding of the complex meaning of the concept of democracy today, while acquiring a better understanding of the current state of affairs of female-authored cinema in the global context. To this purpose, students will watch movies in some of the original languages, and class time will be devoted to the discussion of topics.
As the semester progresses, students will also grow in the mastery of content in some divisions (natural sciences, social sciences, fine arts, humanities). They will be developing important skills that will remain with them for the rest of their lives.
Transferable skills are multiple and manyfold. They refer to any skills one possesses that are useful across various jobs and disciplines. These might include skills like adaptability, organization, teamwork or other qualities employers seek in strong candidates. Transferable skills developed in this course include:
- Verbal and Written Communication Skills
- Critical Thinking, Problem-Solving and Conflict Resolution Skills
- Interpersonal/Teamwork and Teambuilding Skills
- Planning and Organizational Skills
- Decision-Making, Management and or Leadership Skills
Special note: This class will be taught entirely in English. Students are not required to purchase any materials. The professor will provide you with access to all the movies and to the readings. However, it is the student’s responsibility to have access to the appropriate technology to complete the class successfully. All movies will have English subtitles.
Student Assessment Breakdown
- 20% – Contribution (active in-class participation)
- 20% – Participation in our online film festival
- 20% – Written Assignments
- 20% – In class presentation
- 20% – Final digital project
Email Eva Paris to find out more about this course.