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Teen Film/Teens on Film


Monday, May 18–Friday, June 12, 2020

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This course will provide a brief overview of the teen film genre with particular attention to how gender/racial roles are constructed on screen. Historically these kinds of popular films have been subsumed under the broader category of ‘girl culture’. How has this gendering changed over time and what are some of the tropes it has produced? We will begin the course by studying how the category of “the teen” is a relatively recent invention of the postwar period. In terms of its origins, how is teen film a distinctly American genre? And more specifically, what is the difference between a teen film and a film about teens? What kind of commentary do these films offer, formally or narratively, about gender and race? This class will draw from visual and cultural studies, as we will address film theory, gender studies, popular culture, and critical race theory.