551.335 (17S) Advanced Topics in „Film, Literature and Culture Studies”: Utopia and Dystopia in American Culture

Sommersemester 2017

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Erster Termin der LV
14.03.2017 16:00 - 20:00 , N.0.27
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Überblick

Lehrende/r
LV-Titel englisch
Advanced Topics in „Film, Literature and Culture Studies”: Utopia and Dystopia in American Culture
LV-Art
Seminar (prüfungsimmanente LV )
Semesterstunde/n
2.0
ECTS-Anrechungspunkte
8.0
Anmeldungen
14 (20 max.) Anzahl der tatsächlich angemeldeten Studierenden
Organisationseinheit
Unterrichtssprache
Englisch
LV-Beginn
14.03.2017
eLearning
zum Moodle-Kurs
Anmerkungen

Attendance of the first double session on March 14 is MANDATORY

Students MUST read George Orwell's novel 1984 ahead of time in preparation for our first class meeting on March 14.

Seniorstudium Liberale
Ja

LV-Beschreibung

Intendierte Lernergebnisse

Students will learn to differentiate between different subgenres of speculative fiction such as the utopia, anti-utopia, and dystopia, the critical dystopia and the critical utopia. They will develop a deeper understanding of the potentials and limitations of utopian and dystopian imagining in American literature and film, and its past, present, and possible future role in U.S. culture.

Lehrmethodik

Short lecture inputs, in-class discussion of the assigned texts and films in relation to relevant contextual material.

Inhalt/e

In the first weeks of Donald Trump’s presidency, George Orwell's dystopian classic 1984 swiftly climbed to the top of the American bestseller lists. At the same time, blog posts and articles are debating whether other dystopias have been even more prescient in predicting recent developments. Why is it that we turn to speculative fiction in moments of uncertainty and crisis? What can such texts provide us with by telling us stories about our potential future? What are the chief differences between utopian and dystopian modes of storytelling? In this seminar, we will concern ourselves with these questions and read a number of dystopian classics as well as contemporary speculative fiction. We will start out with Orwell’s 1984 and then move on to Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, Phillip K. Dick’s Do Android’s Dream of Electric Sheep? and its legendary film adaption, Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner. In the second half of the semester, we will then turn our attention to utopian storytelling from Ernest Callenbach’s Ecotopia to James Cameron’s Avatar and Kim Stanley Robinson’s brand-new science fiction novel New York 2140. We will ask ourselves what role such speculative imaginings can play in contemporary American culture and whether they are important for the social and political discourse on what constitutes a good society.

Literatur

George Orwell, 1984 (any edition)

Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451 (any edition)

Ernest Callenbach’s Ecotopia (any edition)

Kim Stanley Robinson, New York 2140 (available on March 14)

All other texts and films will be provided by the instructor. 

Prüfungsinformationen

Prüfungsmethode/n

Mid-term response paper (2000 words)

SE-paper (3,500 words)

Prüfungsinhalt/e

The response paper will cover a range of theoretical readings on utopian and dystopian storytelling. Free choice of topic by students for the final paper, as long as there is a focus on American speculative fiction. 

Beurteilungskriterien/-maßstäbe

30% participation 

30% - response paper 

40% - SE-paper 

Beurteilungsschema

Note/Grade Benotungsschema

Position im Curriculum

  • Masterstudium Anglistik und Amerikanistik (SKZ: 812, Version: 11W.1)
    • Fach: Film, Literature and Culture Studies (Wahlfach)
      • Advanced Topics in „Film, Literature and Culture Studies” ( 0.0h SE / 8.0 ECTS)
        • 551.335 Advanced Topics in „Film, Literature and Culture Studies”: Utopia and Dystopia in American Culture (2.0h SE / 8.0 ECTS)
  • Doktoratsstudium Doktoratsstudium der Philosophie (SKZ: 792, Version: 09W.2)
    • Fach: Lehrveranstaltungen auf postgradualem Niveau (Pflichtfach)
      • Lehrveranstaltungen auf postgradualem Niveau ( 6.0h SE / 0.0 ECTS)
        • 551.335 Advanced Topics in „Film, Literature and Culture Studies”: Utopia and Dystopia in American Culture (2.0h SE / 8.0 ECTS)

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