This seminar offers an advanced level study of a specific and narrowed field within the discipline of film and media studies. Each year, this course focuses on topics that reflect the breadth of film and media studies at Colgate. Faculty teach in the area of their scholarly expertise on a rotating basis. The seminar may focus on an in-depth study of a filmmaker, or a school of film, or genre, or focus on an advanced study of the history and theory of television or media, among other things. Prerequisite: FMST 200 and one additional cinema studies course in the FMST minor, or FMST 200 and permission of instructor.
The concepts of “visibility” and “visual representation” have been central to historical as well as contemporary discussions on gender and sexuality—from debates on sexual rights, erotic inclusion, and the emergence of sexual identities to analyses of technology used for reproduction, sex determination, and sexual self-definition. In this course, we will examine what it means ethically and politically to be sexually visible and/or “make visible” sexual identities, cultures, and practices in our contemporary hypermediated and neoliberal moment. How have capitalism and media cultures shaped “the field of vision” that we call gender and sexuality? Have these heavily mediated forms of visibility produced by lifestyles and modes of consumption under capital helped sexual liberation? Or do these visibilities collude with structures of power to police sexual as well as other forms of self-elaboration? Should we see sexual visibility in the form of transnational sex industries as capitalist exploitation? Or should we see them as labors and pleasures that need to be recognized / visualized as such? This course will address these questions and others through televisual, film, and digital media texts. Simultaneously, we will read theoretical work offering Marxist, feminist, psychoanalytic, queer, and postcolonial perspectives on sexual visibility.