Critical Media and Cultural Studies


Critical Media and Cultural Studies (CMC)


Effective Fall Term 2016

Cummings Schoen Tillmann


The “critical” in critical media and cultural studies stems from our commitments to: 1) critical thinking, 2) critical theory’s analysis of social systems and the distribution of power and inequality, and 3) critical issues in our world today, including climate change, poverty, war, and mass incarceration. We ground our program in values of equity, human rights, and social justice.

Skills we hone in CMC include:

  • Deep thinking and analysis
  • Application of theory
  • Synthesis of research findings
  • Written communication
  • Media production, including proficiencies in photo, sound, and video editing
  • Oral communication and discussion facilitation
  • Collaborative learning
  • Multicultural understanding and competence
  • Social action, advocacy, and change

CMC aims to cultivate a community of intellectually curious, socially aware, and politically engaged citizens who can critically read media and cultural texts and produce effective oral, textual, and mediated arguments.

Each major will work with a CMC faculty advisor to create an area of concentration tailored to that student’s interests and goals, culminating in a semester-long senior capstone documentary project.

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS

Three five-semester-hour courses; seven four-semester-hour courses; and one of the following:

  • a CMC-congruent experience (e.g., course or internship) as part of a semester-long study-abroad program,
  • an approved CMC internship (see the Career and Life Planning website for a list of those pre-approved for CMC),
  • significant service to campus media as defined by the student’s CMC faculty advisor,
  • a community engagement (CE) course.

At least eight courses--including all core courses--must be taken at Rollins.

CORE COURSE REQUIREMENTS

ALL of the following.

  • CMC 100 Introduction to Media and Cultural Studies with Lab
  • CMC 200 Researching Media and Culture with Lab
  • CMC 400 Senior Seminar/Research Practicum with Lab

ONE of the following.

  • CMC 300 Critical Frameworks for Contemporary Culture
  • SOC 302 Sociological Theory

ELECTIVE COURSE PARAMETERS

  • Each student will take no fewer than six four-credit (or equivalent) electives.
  • At least three must have a CMC prefix.
  • At least three must be at the 300-level or above.
  • At least three must be thematically congruent with the student’s area of concentration to provide background knowledge for the student’s senior capstone project.
  • At least one Area of Concentration course must be taken outside of CMC.

SAMPLE AREAS OF CONCENTRATION AND REPRESENTATIVE CLASSES

Action, Advocacy, and Social Change

  • CMC 155 Solidarity, Equality, Community
  • CMC 310 Media, Peace and Justice
  • CMC 325 Incarceration and Inequality
  • PHI 312 Feminist Theory (Prerequisite: one PHI or SWAG course)
  • POL 335 Global Health and Human Rights (Prerequisite: POL 130)
  • SEB 220 Global Development Challenges and Opportunities
  • SWAG 205 Introduction to Sexuality, Women’s and Gender Studies

Body, Health, and Society

  • ANT 306 Medicine and Culture (Prerequisite: one ANT or BIO course.)
  • CMC 230 Media and Disability
  • CMC 320 Political Economy of Body and Food
  • CMC 335 Critical Disability Studies
  • ENV 350 Food, Culture, and Environment
  • POL 335 Global Health and Human Rights (Prerequisite: POL 130)
  • PSY 213 Heath Psychology
  • PSY 217 Psychology of Drugs and Addictions
  • REL 300 Religion and the Body (Prerequisite: one REL course)

Critical Media Analysis

  • ANT 255 Middle East Culture
  • ARH 361 History of Photography
  • ARH 364 Picturing War (Prerequisite: Sophomore status or instructor consent)
  • CMC 230 Media and Disability
  • CMC 270 Media, Gender and Sexualities
  • CMC 330 Native American Media and Cultural Studies
  • CMC 335 Critical Disability Studies
  • ECO 142 Political Economy of Media
  • ECO 242 Economics, Media and Propaganda
  • ENG 210 Language and Power (Prerequisite: ENG 140)
  • FIL 150 Introduction to Film
  • HIS 337 American Graphic Media
  • PHI 218 Argumentation and Media Manipulation

Gender Studies

  • ARH 360 Women in Art
  • ANT 275 Sex and Gender: Biology and Culture
  • ANT 277 Women and Gender: Middle East and North Africa
  • CLS 321 Gender and Sex in Antiquity
  • CMC 155 Solidarity, Equality, Community
  • CMC 270 Media, Gender and Sexualities
  • PHI 312 Feminist Theory (Prerequisite: one PHI or SWAG course)
  • PHI 315 Gender, Rights and Relativism (Prerequisite: PHI 108)
  • SEB 220 Global Development Challenges and Opportunities
  • SOC 345 Sociology of Gender (Prerequisite: one SOC course or consent)
  • SWAG 205 Introduction to Sexuality, Women’s and Gender Studies
  • SWAG 350 Feminist Methodology

Media Production

  • ART 230 Introduction to Digital Media
  • ART 295 Photo I Technique, Form and Content
  • CMC 110 Digital Storytelling
  • ENG 211 Show and Tell: Visual and Verbal Text Design (Prerequisite: ENG 140)

Power and Persuasion

  • CMC 110 Digital Storytelling
  • CMC 320 Political Economy of Body and Food
  • CMC 325 Incarceration and Inequality
  • ECO 142 Political Economy of Media
  • ECO 242 Economics, Media, and Propaganda
  • ENG 210 Language and Power (Prerequisite: ENG 140)
  • ENG 211 Show and Tell: Visual and Verbal Text Design (Prerequisite: ENG 140)
  • HIS 346 U.S. Since 1945
  • HIS 347 History of Urban America
  • HIS 349 Mao and the Chinese Revolution
  • HIS 361 Contemporary China
  • PHI 218 Argumentation and Media Manipulation
  • SOC 360 Poverty and Social Welfare (Prerequisite: one SOC course or consent)

Race and Ethnicity Studies

  • ANT 255 Middle East Culture
  • CMC 325 Incarceration and Inequality
  • CMC 330 Native American Media and Cultural Studies
  • HIS 370 Race and Ethnicity in the United States
  • SOC 355 Race and Ethnic Relations (Prerequisite: one SOC course or consent)
  • SOC 356 State of Black America (Prerequisite: one SOC course or consent)

Sexualities Studies

  • ANT 275 Sex and Gender: Biology and Culture
  • CLS 321 Gender and Sex in Antiquity
  • CMC 155 Solidarity, Equality, Community
  • CMC 270 Media, Gender and Sexualities
  • HIS 311 History of American Sexuality
  • PHI 312 Feminist Theory (Prerequisite: one PHI or SWAG course)
  • SOC 346 Sexualities (Prerequisite: one SOC course or consent)
  • THE 360 Forbidden Acts: The Queer Aesthetic in Theatre and Film


CMC Course Descriptions:

CMC 100 Introduction to Media and Cultural Studies with Lab: Orients students to the major’s “triple critical” focus: 1) on critical thinking, 2) on critical theory’s analysis of social systems, including mass media, and the distribution of power and inequality, and 3) on critical issues in our world today. The 1-credit lab builds competency in photo, sound, and video editing.

CMC 110 Digital Storytelling: Develops the ability to use and understand digital technologies as tools for creative multimedia expression. Students study how narrative and symbols structure meaning and create multimedia projects.

CMC 150 Topics in Media and Cultural Studies

CMC 155 Solidarity, Equality, Community: We explore a spectrum of sexual orientations and gender identities with particular focus on LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and more!) identities, histories, and social movements. A welcoming, inclusive environment for the serious and the playful. Expand creative horizons. Engage seasoned activists. See how you can answer Gandhi’s call: "Be the change you wish to see in the world." 

CMC 200 Researching Media and Culture with Lab: What issues keep us awake at night? How might we address pressing challenges like climate change, war, and economic inequality? What separates assumption, belief, and knowledge about those challenges? How can we best translate knowledge into evidence-based arguments? This course explores multiple ways of researching culture and media. Each of us undertakes a project on a topic of our choosing, conducting both background (library) research and original research. The 1-credit lab builds information literacy, helping us find, evaluate, and synthesize information from multiple reputable sources. Prerequisite: CMC 100 or consent.

CMC 220 Writing Lives: The title of this course has at least two meanings, and we will explore both. We will become more introspective about our lives as writers, and we will write creatively and analytically about lived experience, our own and that of others. This class is for those who yearn to read and write in order to understand and bring meaning to their journey.

CMC 230 Media and Disability: Using media as text, this course examines the (mis)representation of people with disabilities in TV, film, documentary, graphic novels, and digital media. We will analyze disability at the intersection of culture and identity and consider how media vary when created by and for the non-disabled. Several problematic implications include able-bodied actors in disabled roles ("crip face") and acquired disability as a fate worse than death (Million Dollar Baby). Using a hands-on approach, we will engage in analysis to understand how emerging media challenge stigma and employ contemporary disability theory.    

CMC 250 Topics in Media and Cultural Studies

CMC 270 Media, Gender and Sexualities: Examines how media portray gender and sexuality; how those portrayals intersect with race, class, and other identities; and how television, music, social media, etc., shape and constrain personal and social power.

CMC 300 Critical Frameworks for Contemporary Culture: What is reality? What is truth? What is history? Who gets to decide? Through reading critical and cultural theory as well as discussion and writing, we will examine through multiple lenses cultural texts such as mainstream and independent news media, cinema, TV, music, and social media. Prerequisite: CMC 100.

CMC 310 Media, Peace, and Justice: How can we use media as tools for change? How can we raise consciousness, our own and others’, then translate that into action? In this course, we not only study media but also engage in hands-on learning, developing and applying our talents to the pursuit of peace and justice.

CMC 320 Political Economy of Body and Food: What's wrong with the ways we relate to our own bodies, to others' bodies, to eating, and to food - and what can we do about it? This course examines the political and economic interests behind body and beauty ideals, body image, body dissatisfaction, eating disorders, steroid abuse, our cultural fear and hatred of fat, weight-based prejudice, and inequalities related to the current food system.

CMC 325 Incarceration and Inequality: As of 2013, U.S. jails and prisons held 2.2 million people—the same as work for Wal-Mart worldwide. The U.S. incarcerates more people than any other country. Class, race, nationality, and sex profoundly affect a person’s interactions with official “justice” systems, influencing who gets stopped, patted down, searched, arrested, and/or charged; who receives what kind of legal representation (if any); who is prosecuted, pressured to plead guilty, and/or convicted; who does time and how much. This course examines ways privilege and inequality manifest in, for example, the War on Drugs; the militarization of policing; prison privatization; solitary confinement; the death penalty; and extrajudicial imprisonment, torture, and killing.

CMC 330 Native American Media and Cultural Studies: Through investigating visual and cultural representation, this course explores how contemporary indigenous peoples reclaim textual production to form identity, reconstruct the past, revitalize culture, and assert sovereignty and treaty rights.

CMC 335 Critical Disability Studies: This course provides an interdisciplinary introduction to disability studies. We examine disability not solely as a medical condition but also as an issue of social and structural inequality. Disability will be studied through a variety of perspectives: culture and identity, gender and sexuality, stigma, media and digital culture, critical race theory, and queer theory. Through hands-on activities and media screenings, you will understand the shifting landscape of disability studies and question "normative" concepts of the body, self, and sexuality.

CMC 350 Topics in Media and Cultural Studies

CMC 400 Senior Seminar/Research Practicum with Lab: This course builds on and advances CMC core course material and discussions pertaining to power and inequality; justice and peace; and cultural identities such as gender, race, class, sexuality, nationality, religion, and dis/ability. Each of us will complete a capstone project that: reflects the critical approach to research, has a significant library research component, has a significant original research component, and communicates an evidence-based argument through documentary short film. Lab builds competency in documentary filmmaking. Prerequisites: all core courses, plus at least four electives for the major.

Affiliated Departments/Programs
African and African American Studies
Anthropology
Art and Art History
Business
Classical Studies
Economics
Education
English
Environmental Studies
Film Studies
Global Health
History
Philosophy
Politics
Psychology
Religion
Sociology
Sexuality, Women’s, and Gender Studies
Theatre and Dance

CMC Faculty
Coffman-Rosen, Stacey
Cummings, Denise
Schoen, Steven
Tillmann, Lisa

Affiliated Faculty
Armenia, Amy (Sociology)
Balak, Benjamin (Economics)
Brandon, Wendy (Education; Sexuality, Women’s, and Gender Studies)
Chambliss, Julian (History, Africa and African American Studies)
Cheng, Martha (English)
Chong, Dan (Politics)
Dennis, Kimberly (Art and Art History; Sexuality, Women’s, and Gender Studies)
Greenberg, Yudit (Religion)
Lauer, Carol (Anthropology)
Libby, Susan (Art and Art History)
Lines, Lee (Environmental Studies)
McLaren, Margaret (Philosophy)
McClure, Amy (Sociology)
Newcomb, Rachel (Anthropology)
Nichter, Matthew (Sociology)
Ouellette, Thomas (Theatre and Dance)
Rock, Charles (Economics)
Roe, Dawn (Art and Art History)
Rubarth, Scott (Philosophy, Classical Studies)
Ruiz, Maria (Psychology)
Strom, Claire (History)
Warnecke, Tonia (Business)
Woodward, Suzanne (Psychology)