The Art & History of Documentary
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Level: Undergraduate
Division: The New School for Public Engagement
School: School of Media Studies
Department: Communication
Course Number: NFLM 3489
Course Format: Lecture
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
Topics:
  • Film & Video History, Theory & Criticism
  • Media Studies
  • Documentary Filmmaking
Description:
In this course, students gain an understanding of how the field of documentary film has been divided into a handful of broadly understood formal approaches, which developed in rough historical succession: montage and propaganda; poetic forms, narrated exposition, fly-on-the-wall, participatory and performative. Historical, formal and ethical questions are discussed in the context of close viewing of examples in various documentary approaches along with readings by film scholars and filmmakers. The course thus provides a working familiarity with a body films and the literature that has developed for over a century of documentary filmmaking, and offers a good foundation for the student wishing to embark on further academic research or his/her own documentary project.
Course Open to: Majors Only