Seeing and Being Seen

Courses in this cluster will examine the multifaceted ways in which surveillance impacts privacy and individual freedoms, the art of concealment in personal and public spheres, and the role of spectacle in shaping our understanding of the world around us.

Course Descriptions

CC101: LGBTQ+ Literature

Instructor: Genevieve Love
Learning Across the Liberal Arts Designation: Analysis & Interpretation of Meaning
CRN# 15408
Block: 1

Introduces features of what might be called a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer literary and theoretical tradition. Uses classical, Renaissance, modern, and contemporary literature, criticism, and film to examine the complicated status and experience of non-majority sexualities and genders. Considers writers, theorists and activists who have explored the relationships among sexuality, gender, knowledge, and literature, including Alison Bechdel, Plato, Michel Foucault, bell hooks, Billy-Ray Belcourt, Oscar Wilde, Nella Larsen, Casey Plett.

CC120: Being an Audience

Instructor: Jordan Lord
CRN# 15409
Block: 2

This course will offer a variety of approaches for thinking about how to write about film and media, by starting with the (often underappreciated) role an audience plays in making a film. During this course, we will not only watch films but learn about different ways in which audiences have given meaning to films, including instances where just being in a film’s audience is a kind of activism and where audiences have reimagined films and their afterlives in ways that contradict the intentions of their so-called creators. We will especially consider this in terms of how queer, Black, brown, and disabled audiences disidentify with representations of their identities and use (mis-)representations for their own ends. As we consider these relationships between film and audience, students will attune to their own ways of being an audience by practicing different styles of writing on film and media, including personal essay, film criticism, formal analysis, and research-based writing. Ultimately, students will use these assignments to reflect on how these different styles of writing, rooted in active audienceship, are foundational for both disciplinary writing in film and media studies (and filmmaking), as well as many other disciplines, including literary, cultural, and visual studies.


CC102: Film Manifestos / Filmmaking

Instructor: Dylan Nelson
Learning Across the Liberal Arts Designation: Creative Practice
CRN# 15410
Block: 1

In this course, students will interrogate assumptions, structures, processes, and meanings within the concept of “manifesto”; study film manifestos from different artists, movements, and time periods in cinema; and watch films deriving from these manifestos, examining – through close reading and visual and narrative analysis – how each film puts its guiding manifesto’s theory into practice. Drawing upon this study and a series of personal creative and craft responses, students will write their own film manifestos, then put these manifestos into practice by making short films representative of their manifestos’ articulated concepts. They will then reflect upon the process of theorizing and of creating from theory an original work of art.

Afternoon screenings and technical demonstrations required.

CC120: Musical Embodiment and Ethnography

Instructor: Liliana Carrizo
CRN# 15411
Block: 3

Building on the idea of music, performance, and culinary practice as forms of “living history,” this course is dedicated to understanding and uncovering cultural belonging from the perspective of the embodiment and the senses. We will attempt to answer: what do social and individual histories look like, if told from the perspective of music and song? In this course, we will draw from and fine-tune the craft of ethnography – utilizing sensory, culinary, and music-based modes of inquiry in order to explore the human condition – including the world, its peoples, and the transnational movement of people over time. Our investigation will culminate in a larger research-based, written ethnographic project and presentation that creatively represents lived experiences of musical embodiment, culinary belonging, and socio-cultural meaning.

1-2 local field trips, and 1-2 evening events.


CC106: Surveillance Society

Instructor: Cacye Hughes
Learning Across the Liberal Arts Designation: Societies and Human Behavior
CRN# 15412
Block: 1

In today’s “surveillance society,” we have become accustomed to trading personal information— wittingly or not—for goods, services, and simply to participate in everyday life. With the rise of big data, state and market institutions routinely collect and analyze data to monitor our purchasing patterns, social networks, and physical movements. However, some people are more insulated from scrutiny than others, and exposure to surveillance of various kinds depends on social status and the matrix of identities each of us hold. In this course, we will examine surveillance through a sociological lens, focusing on how surveillance can generate and reproduce social inequalities. We will cover various formal institutions that surveil particular populations, including the criminal justice, welfare, and child protective systems, and explore contexts where everyday surveillance occurs, including school and workplaces, on social media, and in public spaces. We will also discuss the possibilities for resisting surveillance through formal and informal means. Throughout the course we will consider how being surveilled—and surveilling others—shapes our understanding of ourselves and reflects on the power relations that structure society.

May be one local field trip.

CC120: Race, Place & Environmental Health

Instructor: Wade Roberts
CRN# 15413
Block: 3

This course draws on sociological and public health literatures to examine the relationship between historical forms of systemic racism and contemporary inequities in environmental health across neighborhoods and communities. Students will develop proficiency in ArcGIS Pro, a leading geospatial software program, to carry out research while learning how theory-informed data analysis and the process of writing can work together to generate critical insights that further the cause of social justice.


Report an issue - Last updated: 05/24/2023