This course will explore the aesthetics, subject matter, financing and distribution of American independent film in the last half of the Twentieth Century. We will discuss how independent films differ from mainstream Hollywood fare. We will examine films with subject matter that Hollywood is reluctant to address. Among the films we will consider are Spike Lee's "She's Gotta Have It.", Jim Jarmusch's "Stranger than Paradise", John Sayles' "The Return of the Secaucus Seven", Barbara Kopple's "American Dream" and Errol Morris' "The Thin Blue Line". Full features will be screened weekly at obligatory evening screenings. Readings will include texts on American independent film.