Consulta de Guies Docents



Academic Year/course: 2021/22

3391 - Bachelor's (Degree) Programme in Political and Administration Sciences

23648 - Art, Science and Politics


Teaching Guide Information

Academic Course:
2021/22
Academic Center:
339 - Faculty of Political and Social Sciences
Study:
3391 - Bachelor's (Degree) Programme in Political and Administration Sciences
Subject:
23648 - Art, Science and Politics
Credits:
4.0
Course:
4 and 3
Teaching languages:
Theory: Group 1: English
Teachers:
Camil Ungureanu
Teaching Period:
First Quarter
Schedule:

Presentation

This course aims at developing critical thinking and writing by analysing fundamental political phenomena through film art, political philosophy and ethics. We will reflect on issues such as transitional justice and historical memory, war and morality, economic crisis and equality, radical evil, immigration and justice by analysing systematically works of art by Ford, Coppola, Haneke, Dardenne, or von Trotta.

For each session there is a compulsory background reading that should be done before the class. Students should also see the film under discussion before the class, and prepare their own answers for each session.

The basic book for learning how to interpret film rigorously is Bordwell & Thompson (2012). On this basis, we will combine formal and substantive analysis in order to tackle questions of philosophical and ethical-political relevance. It is advisable that students purchase this book and consult it constantly so as to develop a richer perception and understanding of film art. 

Associated skills

This course is part of the optional courses itinerary “democracy in diverse societies” that, altogether, develops the following competencies/skills:

 

CB2. That students can apply their knowledge to their work or vocation in a professional manner and have competences typically demonstrated through devising and sustaining arguments and solving problems within their field of study.

CB3. That students have the ability to gather and interpret relevant data (usually within their field of study) to inform judgments that include reflection on relevant social, scientific or ethical.

CB4. That students can communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences.

CB5. That students have developed those skills needed to undertake further studies with a high degree of autonomy.

 

GENERAL SKILLS:

CG1. Capacity for analysis and synthesis.

CG3. Knowledge of a second language.

CG6. Interpersonal skills. 

 

TRANSVERSAL SKILLS:

CT1. Identify and critically analyze gender inequality and its intersection with other axes of inequality.

 

SPECIFIC SKILLS:

CE8. Interpret contemporary political theories and arguments.

CE9. Interpret the historical dimension of political and social processes.

CE17. Apply the methods and techniques of political and social research.

CE19. Examine the techniques of political communication.

Sustainable Development Goals

ODS 5: Igualtat de gènere / Gender equality

ODS 10: Reducció de les desigualtats / Reduced inequalities

ODS 11: Ciutats i comunitats sostenibles / Sustainable cities and communities

ODS 13: Acció climàtica / Climate action

ODS 16: Pau, Justícia i institucions sòlides / Peace, justice and strong institutions

 

Contents

I. Introduction (Battleship Potemkin, 1925; dir. Sergei Eisenstein)

Why study politics through art? What is the relation between film art, politics and philosophy? What are the main elements of film production and representation?

Reading:

Bordwell, David and Thompson, Kristin Film Art: An Introduction, 2012 (ch. 1)

 

II. Method and terminology in interpreting cinema (Do the right thing, 1989; dir. Spike Lee)

What are the adequate methods of studying cinema? What are the key terms in analysing cinema rigorously? Analyse Bordwell´s and Thompson´s interpretation of Lee´s movie.

Readings:

Bordwell and Thompson Film Art (ch. 2 and 3)

Mulhall, Stephen, On Film, Routledge, 2010 (excerpt)

 

III. Foundation of political community, law and violence (The man who shot Liberty Valance 1962, dir. John Ford)

What´s the role of myth in founding political communities? Is there a difference between a myth and a lie? What´s relation between law and violence? Why does Doniphon choose to remain anonymous? How accurate is Cercas´ analogy between Suarez and Doniphon?

Readings:

Pippin, Robert Hollywood Westerns and American Myth: The Importance of Howard Hawks and John Ford for Political Philosophy, Yale University Press, 2010 (excerpt).

Cercas, Javier “El hombre que mató a Francisco Franco”, El Pais, 2 April, 2014 (http://elpais.com/elpais/2014/04/01/opinion/1396356540_972626.html)

IV. Community-building, exclusion, and collective responsibility (Caché, 2005, dir. Michael Haneke)

Why does Haneke convert a real fact and a documentary into an enigmatic parable? What is the identity of the “ghost director” in the movie? What´s the significance of Majid´s surprising suicide? What´s the significance the last scene in the movie? Do Haneke and Ford build a similar image about the relation between community and violence?

Reading:  

Ungureanu, Camil "Difficult Community, Violence and Collective Responsibility in Haneke´s Caché", Angelaki. Journal of Theoretical Humanities, 4, 2014.

 

V. Transition to democracy and the dilemmas of justice (Disgrace, 2008, dir. Steve Jacobs)

What´s the relationship between law and forgiveness? What´s the connection between the film and the South African transition? Is Disgrace an anti-feminist film? How can Lucy´s decision be understood and justified?

Reading:

J. M. Coetzee, Disgrace, Vintage, 1999 (fragments).

 

VI.          War, morality and emergency situations (Apocalypse Now, 1979; dir. Francis Coppola)

 

What is the relation between war and morality in Apocalypse now? How many moral conceptions clash in the movie? How does emergency situations affect the moral problematic?

Readings:

Conrad, Joseph, The Heart of Darkness (excerpt).

Walzer, Michael, “Emergency ethics”

 

VII. Radical evil and totalitarianism (Hannah Arendt, 2012; dir. M. von Trotta).

What is radical evil? What´s the significance of Arendt´s thesis of the banality of evil, and why did it generate a bitter polemic? If convincing at all, is Arendt´s thesis generalizable?

Reading:

Arendt, Hannah, “Epilogue” (excerpt from Arendt, Eichmann in Jerusalem. A Report on the Banality of Evil, Penguin Classics, 2006)

 

VIII. Genetic revolution and the future of politics (Gattaca, 2003, dir. A. Niccol).

What are the ethical dilemmas posed by the genetic revolution? How does genetics shape politics in Gattaca? Is this a plausible view? Would Buchanan agree to the bleak image depicted in Gattaca?

Reading:

Buchanan, Allen 2011, Better Than Human, Oxford University Press, 2011 (excerpt).

 

IX.         Mass media, power and privacy (Citizenfour, 2014, dir. L. Poitras)

 How does technology impact politics and political power? Does Snowden´s acts generate any ethical or political dilemmas? Is full transparency a desideratum? What are the main traits of an ethics of whistleblowing?   

Scheuerman, William “Snowden and the Ethics of Whistleblowing”, Boston Review, May, 21, 2014 (http://bostonreview.net/books-ideas/scheuerman-snowden-greenwald-harding-sagar).

Zizek, Slavoj “Freedom in the cloud”, 2014 (http://inthesetimes.com/article/15451/freedom_in_the_cloud)

 

X.            Economic crisis, work and (mis)recognition(Two days, one night, 2014, dir. Dardenne Brothers),

What´s the role of ethics in dealing with an economic crisis situation? What´s brothers Dardenne´s tack on the current crisis – that is, what´s the morale of the film (if any)? How would you assess it on account of your own experience of the crisis?  

 

 Other Relevant films & documentaries

(useful for essays, and used as illustration during classes)

Luis Buñuel & Salvador Dali, Un chien andalou (1929); Buñuel, Viridiana (1961; El Angel Exterminador (1962)

Pier Paolo Pasolini, Mamma Roma (1962); Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma (1975)

Jean-Luc Godard, La Chinoise (1967); Socialism (2010)

Stanley Kubrick, Clockwork Orange (1971)

Lars von Trier, The Idiots (1998)

Harum Farocki & Andrei Ujica, Videograms of a Revolution (1992)

Spike Lee, Malcolm X (1992), Do the right thing (1989)

Michael Haneke, Benny´s Video, 1992; Funny Games (1997).

Dardenne Brothers, The promise (1996)

Quentin Tarantino Django Unchained (2012)

Sophie Fiennes, The Pervert's Guide to Cinema, 2006 (writer: Slavoj Zizek).

Jasmila Zbanic, Grbavica (2006)

Ken Loach, It´s a free world (2007)

Pedro Costa Cavalo Dinheiro (2014)

Evaluation

- class participation (30%)

- research project (2500-3000 words) (50 %). The research essay can be related to other art forms. The project can be written between two or three students (in this case, the size of the project will be adjusted accordingly).

The tutor will provide a list of themes and questions, although students care encouraged to propose their own themes.

- short video analysis (5-8 min) (20%)

Invited scholar: prof. Andrea Soto (Talk: Capitalism, gender and the performativity of images”) (date to be established).

 

Project topics

1. The essays will be oriented to current issues that relate art and politics. The projects will be based on questions (puzzles) that will guide the structure of the final essay and argument. Students should approximate their own puzzles and narrow down the focus when necessary (e.g. in terms of the number of materials under analysis).

Students are expected to do regular research by using JSTOR and other data bases in order to look for specialized quarterlies, scholarly reviews, books, directors’ or author’s interviews.

1. As an alternative to the traditional written essays, students can opt for other formats (video essay, photography essay, etc.) on a political problematic.  

2. Deadlines

October 18: choice of topic

November 10: questions, preliminary argument, structure, division of labor (700-1000 words)

December 29: hand in the essay/project.

3. Topics & Problems

The issues are general. Students will have to refine the questions (with respect to gender, capitalism, the question of the people, etc., depending on the case) and propose a structure and division of labor.

  1. Postcolonialism between Marxism, feminism and tradition: the case of Ousmane Sembene
  2. The roles of politically incorrect/political humor in cinema
  1. Cinematic populism, gender, and myth-making
  • E.g. In the Marvel universe: Ethical and political dilemmas in the Batman series.
  • E.g. The Politics and Significance of the figure of the Joker
  • E.g. Podemos and the Game of Thrones.
  1. Michel Houellebecq’s literary critique of the modern society: between nihilism and utopia
  2. J. M. Coetzee’s literary trilogy (2014-2019) and the future of society
  3. Visual politics in times of the pandemic crisis.
  1. From traditional to entertainment nationalism? The political uses of cinema and humor: the case of Vox.
  1. Documentary-making, visual politics and the feminization of power: Ada Colau’s case.

 

 


Academic Year/course: 2021/22

3391 - Bachelor's (Degree) Programme in Political and Administration Sciences

23648 - Art, Science and Politics


Informació de la Guia Docent

Academic Course:
2021/22
Academic Center:
339 - Faculty of Political and Social Sciences
Study:
3391 - Bachelor's (Degree) Programme in Political and Administration Sciences
Subject:
23648 - Art, Science and Politics
Credits:
4.0
Course:
4 and 3
Teaching languages:
Theory: Group 1: English
Teachers:
Camil Ungureanu
Teaching Period:
First Quarter
Schedule:

Presentation

This course aims at developing critical thinking and writing by analysing fundamental political phenomena through film art, political philosophy and ethics. We will reflect on issues such as transitional justice and historical memory, war and morality, economic crisis and equality, radical evil, immigration and justice by analysing systematically works of art by Ford, Coppola, Haneke, Dardenne, or von Trotta.

For each session there is a compulsory background reading that should be done before the class. Students should also see the film under discussion before the class, and prepare their own answers for each session.

The basic book for learning how to interpret film rigorously is Bordwell & Thompson (2012). On this basis, we will combine formal and substantive analysis in order to tackle questions of philosophical and ethical-political relevance. It is advisable that students purchase this book and consult it constantly so as to develop a richer perception and understanding of film art. 

Associated skills

This course is part of the optional courses itinerary “democracy in diverse societies” that, altogether, develops the following competencies/skills:

 

CB2. That students can apply their knowledge to their work or vocation in a professional manner and have competences typically demonstrated through devising and sustaining arguments and solving problems within their field of study.

CB3. That students have the ability to gather and interpret relevant data (usually within their field of study) to inform judgments that include reflection on relevant social, scientific or ethical.

CB4. That students can communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences.

CB5. That students have developed those skills needed to undertake further studies with a high degree of autonomy.

 

GENERAL SKILLS:

CG1. Capacity for analysis and synthesis.

CG3. Knowledge of a second language.

CG6. Interpersonal skills. 

 

TRANSVERSAL SKILLS:

CT1. Identify and critically analyze gender inequality and its intersection with other axes of inequality.

 

SPECIFIC SKILLS:

CE8. Interpret contemporary political theories and arguments.

CE9. Interpret the historical dimension of political and social processes.

CE17. Apply the methods and techniques of political and social research.

CE19. Examine the techniques of political communication.

Sustainable Development Goals

ODS 5: Igualtat de gènere / Gender equality

ODS 10: Reducció de les desigualtats / Reduced inequalities

ODS 11: Ciutats i comunitats sostenibles / Sustainable cities and communities

ODS 13: Acció climàtica / Climate action

ODS 16: Pau, Justícia i institucions sòlides / Peace, justice and strong institutions

 

Contents

I. Introduction (Battleship Potemkin, 1925; dir. Sergei Eisenstein)

Why study politics through art? What is the relation between film art, politics and philosophy? What are the main elements of film production and representation?

Reading:

Bordwell, David and Thompson, Kristin Film Art: An Introduction, 2012 (ch. 1)

 

II. Method and terminology in interpreting cinema (Do the right thing, 1989; dir. Spike Lee)

What are the adequate methods of studying cinema? What are the key terms in analysing cinema rigorously? Analyse Bordwell´s and Thompson´s interpretation of Lee´s movie.

Readings:

Bordwell and Thompson Film Art (ch. 2 and 3)

Mulhall, Stephen, On Film, Routledge, 2010 (excerpt)

 

III. Foundation of political community, law and violence (The man who shot Liberty Valance 1962, dir. John Ford)

What´s the role of myth in founding political communities? Is there a difference between a myth and a lie? What´s relation between law and violence? Why does Doniphon choose to remain anonymous? How accurate is Cercas´ analogy between Suarez and Doniphon?

Readings:

Pippin, Robert Hollywood Westerns and American Myth: The Importance of Howard Hawks and John Ford for Political Philosophy, Yale University Press, 2010 (excerpt).

Cercas, Javier “El hombre que mató a Francisco Franco”, El Pais, 2 April, 2014 (http://elpais.com/elpais/2014/04/01/opinion/1396356540_972626.html)

IV. Community-building, exclusion, and collective responsibility (Caché, 2005, dir. Michael Haneke)

Why does Haneke convert a real fact and a documentary into an enigmatic parable? What is the identity of the “ghost director” in the movie? What´s the significance of Majid´s surprising suicide? What´s the significance the last scene in the movie? Do Haneke and Ford build a similar image about the relation between community and violence?

Reading:  

Ungureanu, Camil "Difficult Community, Violence and Collective Responsibility in Haneke´s Caché", Angelaki. Journal of Theoretical Humanities, 4, 2014.

 

V. Transition to democracy and the dilemmas of justice (Disgrace, 2008, dir. Steve Jacobs)

What´s the relationship between law and forgiveness? What´s the connection between the film and the South African transition? Is Disgrace an anti-feminist film? How can Lucy´s decision be understood and justified?

Reading:

J. M. Coetzee, Disgrace, Vintage, 1999 (fragments).

 

VI.          War, morality and emergency situations (Apocalypse Now, 1979; dir. Francis Coppola)

 

What is the relation between war and morality in Apocalypse now? How many moral conceptions clash in the movie? How does emergency situations affect the moral problematic?

Readings:

Conrad, Joseph, The Heart of Darkness (excerpt).

Walzer, Michael, “Emergency ethics”

 

VII. Radical evil and totalitarianism (Hannah Arendt, 2012; dir. M. von Trotta).

What is radical evil? What´s the significance of Arendt´s thesis of the banality of evil, and why did it generate a bitter polemic? If convincing at all, is Arendt´s thesis generalizable?

Reading:

Arendt, Hannah, “Epilogue” (excerpt from Arendt, Eichmann in Jerusalem. A Report on the Banality of Evil, Penguin Classics, 2006)

 

VIII. Genetic revolution and the future of politics (Gattaca, 2003, dir. A. Niccol).

What are the ethical dilemmas posed by the genetic revolution? How does genetics shape politics in Gattaca? Is this a plausible view? Would Buchanan agree to the bleak image depicted in Gattaca?

Reading:

Buchanan, Allen 2011, Better Than Human, Oxford University Press, 2011 (excerpt).

 

IX.         Mass media, power and privacy (Citizenfour, 2014, dir. L. Poitras)

 How does technology impact politics and political power? Does Snowden´s acts generate any ethical or political dilemmas? Is full transparency a desideratum? What are the main traits of an ethics of whistleblowing?   

Scheuerman, William “Snowden and the Ethics of Whistleblowing”, Boston Review, May, 21, 2014 (http://bostonreview.net/books-ideas/scheuerman-snowden-greenwald-harding-sagar).

Zizek, Slavoj “Freedom in the cloud”, 2014 (http://inthesetimes.com/article/15451/freedom_in_the_cloud)

 

X.            Economic crisis, work and (mis)recognition(Two days, one night, 2014, dir. Dardenne Brothers),

What´s the role of ethics in dealing with an economic crisis situation? What´s brothers Dardenne´s tack on the current crisis – that is, what´s the morale of the film (if any)? How would you assess it on account of your own experience of the crisis?  

 

 Other Relevant films & documentaries

(useful for essays, and used as illustration during classes)

Luis Buñuel & Salvador Dali, Un chien andalou (1929); Buñuel, Viridiana (1961; El Angel Exterminador (1962)

Pier Paolo Pasolini, Mamma Roma (1962); Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma (1975)

Jean-Luc Godard, La Chinoise (1967); Socialism (2010)

Stanley Kubrick, Clockwork Orange (1971)

Lars von Trier, The Idiots (1998)

Harum Farocki & Andrei Ujica, Videograms of a Revolution (1992)

Spike Lee, Malcolm X (1992), Do the right thing (1989)

Michael Haneke, Benny´s Video, 1992; Funny Games (1997).

Dardenne Brothers, The promise (1996)

Quentin Tarantino Django Unchained (2012)

Sophie Fiennes, The Pervert's Guide to Cinema, 2006 (writer: Slavoj Zizek).

Jasmila Zbanic, Grbavica (2006)

Ken Loach, It´s a free world (2007)

Pedro Costa Cavalo Dinheiro (2014)

Evaluation

- class participation (30%)

- research project (2500-3000 words) (50 %). The research essay can be related to other art forms. The project can be written between two or three students (in this case, the size of the project will be adjusted accordingly).

The tutor will provide a list of themes and questions, although students care encouraged to propose their own themes.

- short video analysis (5-8 min) (20%)

Invited scholar: prof. Andrea Soto (Talk: Capitalism, gender and the performativity of images”) (date to be established).

 

Project topics

1. The essays will be oriented to current issues that relate art and politics. The projects will be based on questions (puzzles) that will guide the structure of the final essay and argument. Students should approximate their own puzzles and narrow down the focus when necessary (e.g. in terms of the number of materials under analysis).

Students are expected to do regular research by using JSTOR and other data bases in order to look for specialized quarterlies, scholarly reviews, books, directors’ or author’s interviews.

1. As an alternative to the traditional written essays, students can opt for other formats (video essay, photography essay, etc.) on a political problematic.  

2. Deadlines

October 18: choice of topic

November 10: questions, preliminary argument, structure, division of labor (700-1000 words)

December 29: hand in the essay/project.

3. Topics & Problems

The issues are general. Students will have to refine the questions (with respect to gender, capitalism, the question of the people, etc., depending on the case) and propose a structure and division of labor.

  1. Postcolonialism between Marxism, feminism and tradition: the case of Ousmane Sembene
  2. The roles of politically incorrect/political humor in cinema
  1. Cinematic populism, gender, and myth-making
  • E.g. In the Marvel universe: Ethical and political dilemmas in the Batman series.
  • E.g. The Politics and Significance of the figure of the Joker
  • E.g. Podemos and the Game of Thrones.
  1. Michel Houellebecq’s literary critique of the modern society: between nihilism and utopia
  2. J. M. Coetzee’s literary trilogy (2014-2019) and the future of society
  3. Visual politics in times of the pandemic crisis.
  1. From traditional to entertainment nationalism? The political uses of cinema and humor: the case of Vox.
  1. Documentary-making, visual politics and the feminization of power: Ada Colau’s case.

 

 


Academic Year/course: 2021/22

3391 - Bachelor's (Degree) Programme in Political and Administration Sciences

23648 - Art, Science and Politics


Información de la Guía Docente

Academic Course:
2021/22
Academic Center:
339 - Faculty of Political and Social Sciences
Study:
3391 - Bachelor's (Degree) Programme in Political and Administration Sciences
Subject:
23648 - Art, Science and Politics
Credits:
4.0
Course:
4 and 3
Teaching languages:
Theory: Group 1: English
Teachers:
Camil Ungureanu
Teaching Period:
First Quarter
Schedule:

Presentation

This course aims at developing critical thinking and writing by analysing fundamental political phenomena through film art, political philosophy and ethics. We will reflect on issues such as transitional justice and historical memory, war and morality, economic crisis and equality, radical evil, immigration and justice by analysing systematically works of art by Ford, Coppola, Haneke, Dardenne, or von Trotta.

For each session there is a compulsory background reading that should be done before the class. Students should also see the film under discussion before the class, and prepare their own answers for each session.

The basic book for learning how to interpret film rigorously is Bordwell & Thompson (2012). On this basis, we will combine formal and substantive analysis in order to tackle questions of philosophical and ethical-political relevance. It is advisable that students purchase this book and consult it constantly so as to develop a richer perception and understanding of film art. 

Associated skills

This course is part of the optional courses itinerary “democracy in diverse societies” that, altogether, develops the following competencies/skills:

 

CB2. That students can apply their knowledge to their work or vocation in a professional manner and have competences typically demonstrated through devising and sustaining arguments and solving problems within their field of study.

CB3. That students have the ability to gather and interpret relevant data (usually within their field of study) to inform judgments that include reflection on relevant social, scientific or ethical.

CB4. That students can communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences.

CB5. That students have developed those skills needed to undertake further studies with a high degree of autonomy.

 

GENERAL SKILLS:

CG1. Capacity for analysis and synthesis.

CG3. Knowledge of a second language.

CG6. Interpersonal skills. 

 

TRANSVERSAL SKILLS:

CT1. Identify and critically analyze gender inequality and its intersection with other axes of inequality.

 

SPECIFIC SKILLS:

CE8. Interpret contemporary political theories and arguments.

CE9. Interpret the historical dimension of political and social processes.

CE17. Apply the methods and techniques of political and social research.

CE19. Examine the techniques of political communication.

Sustainable Development Goals

ODS 5: Igualtat de gènere / Gender equality

ODS 10: Reducció de les desigualtats / Reduced inequalities

ODS 11: Ciutats i comunitats sostenibles / Sustainable cities and communities

ODS 13: Acció climàtica / Climate action

ODS 16: Pau, Justícia i institucions sòlides / Peace, justice and strong institutions

 

Contents

I. Introduction (Battleship Potemkin, 1925; dir. Sergei Eisenstein)

Why study politics through art? What is the relation between film art, politics and philosophy? What are the main elements of film production and representation?

Reading:

Bordwell, David and Thompson, Kristin Film Art: An Introduction, 2012 (ch. 1)

 

II. Method and terminology in interpreting cinema (Do the right thing, 1989; dir. Spike Lee)

What are the adequate methods of studying cinema? What are the key terms in analysing cinema rigorously? Analyse Bordwell´s and Thompson´s interpretation of Lee´s movie.

Readings:

Bordwell and Thompson Film Art (ch. 2 and 3)

Mulhall, Stephen, On Film, Routledge, 2010 (excerpt)

 

III. Foundation of political community, law and violence (The man who shot Liberty Valance 1962, dir. John Ford)

What´s the role of myth in founding political communities? Is there a difference between a myth and a lie? What´s relation between law and violence? Why does Doniphon choose to remain anonymous? How accurate is Cercas´ analogy between Suarez and Doniphon?

Readings:

Pippin, Robert Hollywood Westerns and American Myth: The Importance of Howard Hawks and John Ford for Political Philosophy, Yale University Press, 2010 (excerpt).

Cercas, Javier “El hombre que mató a Francisco Franco”, El Pais, 2 April, 2014 (http://elpais.com/elpais/2014/04/01/opinion/1396356540_972626.html)

IV. Community-building, exclusion, and collective responsibility (Caché, 2005, dir. Michael Haneke)

Why does Haneke convert a real fact and a documentary into an enigmatic parable? What is the identity of the “ghost director” in the movie? What´s the significance of Majid´s surprising suicide? What´s the significance the last scene in the movie? Do Haneke and Ford build a similar image about the relation between community and violence?

Reading:  

Ungureanu, Camil "Difficult Community, Violence and Collective Responsibility in Haneke´s Caché", Angelaki. Journal of Theoretical Humanities, 4, 2014.

 

V. Transition to democracy and the dilemmas of justice (Disgrace, 2008, dir. Steve Jacobs)

What´s the relationship between law and forgiveness? What´s the connection between the film and the South African transition? Is Disgrace an anti-feminist film? How can Lucy´s decision be understood and justified?

Reading:

J. M. Coetzee, Disgrace, Vintage, 1999 (fragments).

 

VI.          War, morality and emergency situations (Apocalypse Now, 1979; dir. Francis Coppola)

 

What is the relation between war and morality in Apocalypse now? How many moral conceptions clash in the movie? How does emergency situations affect the moral problematic?

Readings:

Conrad, Joseph, The Heart of Darkness (excerpt).

Walzer, Michael, “Emergency ethics”

 

VII. Radical evil and totalitarianism (Hannah Arendt, 2012; dir. M. von Trotta).

What is radical evil? What´s the significance of Arendt´s thesis of the banality of evil, and why did it generate a bitter polemic? If convincing at all, is Arendt´s thesis generalizable?

Reading:

Arendt, Hannah, “Epilogue” (excerpt from Arendt, Eichmann in Jerusalem. A Report on the Banality of Evil, Penguin Classics, 2006)

 

VIII. Genetic revolution and the future of politics (Gattaca, 2003, dir. A. Niccol).

What are the ethical dilemmas posed by the genetic revolution? How does genetics shape politics in Gattaca? Is this a plausible view? Would Buchanan agree to the bleak image depicted in Gattaca?

Reading:

Buchanan, Allen 2011, Better Than Human, Oxford University Press, 2011 (excerpt).

 

IX.         Mass media, power and privacy (Citizenfour, 2014, dir. L. Poitras)

 How does technology impact politics and political power? Does Snowden´s acts generate any ethical or political dilemmas? Is full transparency a desideratum? What are the main traits of an ethics of whistleblowing?   

Scheuerman, William “Snowden and the Ethics of Whistleblowing”, Boston Review, May, 21, 2014 (http://bostonreview.net/books-ideas/scheuerman-snowden-greenwald-harding-sagar).

Zizek, Slavoj “Freedom in the cloud”, 2014 (http://inthesetimes.com/article/15451/freedom_in_the_cloud)

 

X.            Economic crisis, work and (mis)recognition(Two days, one night, 2014, dir. Dardenne Brothers),

What´s the role of ethics in dealing with an economic crisis situation? What´s brothers Dardenne´s tack on the current crisis – that is, what´s the morale of the film (if any)? How would you assess it on account of your own experience of the crisis?  

 

 Other Relevant films & documentaries

(useful for essays, and used as illustration during classes)

Luis Buñuel & Salvador Dali, Un chien andalou (1929); Buñuel, Viridiana (1961; El Angel Exterminador (1962)

Pier Paolo Pasolini, Mamma Roma (1962); Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma (1975)

Jean-Luc Godard, La Chinoise (1967); Socialism (2010)

Stanley Kubrick, Clockwork Orange (1971)

Lars von Trier, The Idiots (1998)

Harum Farocki & Andrei Ujica, Videograms of a Revolution (1992)

Spike Lee, Malcolm X (1992), Do the right thing (1989)

Michael Haneke, Benny´s Video, 1992; Funny Games (1997).

Dardenne Brothers, The promise (1996)

Quentin Tarantino Django Unchained (2012)

Sophie Fiennes, The Pervert's Guide to Cinema, 2006 (writer: Slavoj Zizek).

Jasmila Zbanic, Grbavica (2006)

Ken Loach, It´s a free world (2007)

Pedro Costa Cavalo Dinheiro (2014)

Evaluation

- class participation (30%)

- research project (2500-3000 words) (50 %). The research essay can be related to other art forms. The project can be written between two or three students (in this case, the size of the project will be adjusted accordingly).

The tutor will provide a list of themes and questions, although students care encouraged to propose their own themes.

- short video analysis (5-8 min) (20%)

Invited scholar: prof. Andrea Soto (Talk: Capitalism, gender and the performativity of images”) (date to be established).

 

Project topics

1. The essays will be oriented to current issues that relate art and politics. The projects will be based on questions (puzzles) that will guide the structure of the final essay and argument. Students should approximate their own puzzles and narrow down the focus when necessary (e.g. in terms of the number of materials under analysis).

Students are expected to do regular research by using JSTOR and other data bases in order to look for specialized quarterlies, scholarly reviews, books, directors’ or author’s interviews.

1. As an alternative to the traditional written essays, students can opt for other formats (video essay, photography essay, etc.) on a political problematic.  

2. Deadlines

October 18: choice of topic

November 10: questions, preliminary argument, structure, division of labor (700-1000 words)

December 29: hand in the essay/project.

3. Topics & Problems

The issues are general. Students will have to refine the questions (with respect to gender, capitalism, the question of the people, etc., depending on the case) and propose a structure and division of labor.

  1. Postcolonialism between Marxism, feminism and tradition: the case of Ousmane Sembene
  2. The roles of politically incorrect/political humor in cinema
  1. Cinematic populism, gender, and myth-making
  • E.g. In the Marvel universe: Ethical and political dilemmas in the Batman series.
  • E.g. The Politics and Significance of the figure of the Joker
  • E.g. Podemos and the Game of Thrones.
  1. Michel Houellebecq’s literary critique of the modern society: between nihilism and utopia
  2. J. M. Coetzee’s literary trilogy (2014-2019) and the future of society
  3. Visual politics in times of the pandemic crisis.
  1. From traditional to entertainment nationalism? The political uses of cinema and humor: the case of Vox.
  1. Documentary-making, visual politics and the feminization of power: Ada Colau’s case.