2020-2021 Undergraduate Academic Catalog

CANTH 2502 Film, Culture and Society

This course considers the history and development of anthropological and ethnographic filmmaking in fostering an appreciation for cultural diversity. We will focus on the encounter of the social scientist and the filmmaker with their subjects and how issues of cultural background and social categories of race, class and gender impact our study of cultural diversity and the human experience. Students will be introduced to a critical understanding of the visual construct of reality in studying how cultural beliefs and practices are interrelated. Through film screenings, lectures, readings and classroom discussion students will experience how patterns of behavior in various cultures can be 'exoticized' and will be better able to evaluate both written ethnographies as well as filmic representations of human behavior. We will use ethnographic film to illustrate anthropological concepts in a global and historical context and develop a critical perspective for viewing visual representations of culture.