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Race Films: Spike Lee and his Interlocutors

ENGL 281.401
crosslisted as: AFRC 281, ANTH 281, CINE 281, COMM 281
instructor(s):
TR 1:30-3
ANNS 109
screenings: Wednesdays 5-7 Annenberg 110
fulfills requirements:
Sector 2: Difference and Diaspora of the Standard Major
Sector 6: 20th Century Literature of the Standard Major

This course requires students to think critically about historical and contemporary cinematic representations of race, class, gender, sexuality, and the urban landscape. The class will examine various Spike Lee films for their aestheticization of broader social and cultural phenomena as well as their engagement with larger theoretical and political concerns. Students will be asked to watch all films closely, placing them in explicit conversation with the concepts and arguments that emerge from assigned readings and classroom discussions. By the end of the semester, students should have a richer understanding of not only Spike Lee’s oeuvre but also of how his filmic offerings are “read” from a variety of analytical and political vantage points—as well as across a wide range of genres and disciplines.