JCU Logo

JOHN CABOT UNIVERSITY

COURSE CODE: "COM 570"
COURSE NAME: "Advanced Media Theory"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2019
SYLLABUS

INSTRUCTOR: Peter Sarram
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MW 11:30 AM 12:45 PM
TOTAL NO. OF CONTACT HOURS: 45
CREDITS: 3
PREREQUISITES:
OFFICE HOURS: M/W 10-11 or by appointment

COURSE DESCRIPTION:
This course is designed as an advanced level exploration of major theories and schools of thought in media studies and communications. It surveys foundational theories about media and communication, ranging from mass media in the 19th century to contemporary digital media and cultures. Schools of thought and concepts covered in the course include the study of ideology, hegemony, political economy, culture industries, medium theory, cultural studies, mass media and society, spectacle and spectatorship, race, gender, post-colonialism, semiotics, and postmodernism. Students will apply theories through practical written research projects and analysis of current media practices.
SUMMARY OF COURSE CONTENT:

This course examines central issues relating to theories of media and society encountered in media studies, and to prepare students for graduate school level studies. The course concentrates on four key areas in mass communication theory: the theoretical roots of social science as a context for media theory; the political economy of the media and institutional analysis; media effects and the mass audience; and the relationship between media production, textuality and reception.

COM 570 is a graduate level course and while students enrolled in the course will regularly meet together with the COM 470 students and will be required to fulfil all requirements expected in that class they will be also be required to do extra readings, meet regularly with the course instructor and develop a longer final research project. The extra readings will be decided upon by the instructor on the basis of the students' final projects.

LEARNING OUTCOMES:

This course examines central issues relating to theories of media and society encountered in media studies, and to prepare students for graduate school level studies. The course concentrates on four key areas in mass communication theory: the theoretical roots of social science as a context for media theory; the political economy of the media and institutional analysis; media effects and the mass audience; and the relationship between media production, textuality and reception.

TEXTBOOK:
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Capitalist RealismMark FisherZero Books978-1846943171 Capitalist Realism Mark Fisher Zero Books
Key Themes in Media TheoryDan LaugheyOpen University Press978-0335218134   
Media and Cultural Studies: Keyworks; 2nd Revised EditionDurham & KellnerJohn Wiley & Sons978-0470658086   
REQUIRED RESERVED READING:
NONE

RECOMMENDED RESERVED READING:
NONE
GRADING POLICY
-ASSESSMENT METHODS:
AssignmentGuidelinesWeight
Midterm Essay 20
Final Exam 25
Theory Presentation 15
Final Analysis Paper 30
Attendance/Participation 10

-ASSESSMENT CRITERIA:
AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the cours
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

-ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS:
na
ACADEMIC HONESTY
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
STUDENTS WITH LEARNING OR OTHER DISABILITIES
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.

SCHEDULE

COURSE SCHEDULE:

Week 1:

 

Intro to Theory

Chp. 1 & 10 (KT) + Adventures in Media and Cultural Studies (KW)

+ Carey

 

Week 2&3:

 

Medium and Message

Chp. 3 (KT) + McLuhan, Benjamin, Berger

RMT Chp. 6&13

 

Week 4-6:

 

Culture, Ideology and Hegemony

Chp. 7 (KT) + Marx&Engels; Gramsci; Williams; Horkheimer&Adorno; Althusser (KW)

+ Debord + Enzensberger

RMT Chp. 10, 11, 8, 9, 12, 16

 

Week 6-8:

 

Cultural Studies, Semiotics, Signification & Structuralism

Chp. 4 (KT) + Barthes, Hall, Hebdige (KW) + Eco + Barthes + Todorov

RMT Chp. 18, 10, 20, 24

Week 8&9:

 

The Postmodern Turn

Chp. 8 (KT) + Jameson, Baudrillard, Poster, McRobbie (KW) + Foucault

RMT Chp. 21

 

Week 10:

 

Accelerate Theory!

Deleuze & Guattari; Srnicek & Williams + Shaviro + Noys

 

Week 11:

 

The Postcolonial Matrix

Chp. 7 (KT) + Gilroy, Appadurai, Garcia Canclini, Barbero, Pieterse (KW) + Said

 

Week 12&13:

 

‘Difference’, Gender +  Poaching and Everyday Life

Chp. 9 (KT); Dyer, hooks, De Certeau, Fiske

 

Week 14:

 

Media Studies 2.0

Gauntlett, Couldry