Fall 2010 - Graduate Course Descriptions

Riccio, Thomas
Discipline and Number
HUAS 6393 Section 001
F Time 12:30 PM - 3:15 PM
Course Title
Video Narrative

Description of Course:

The class founded on the premise that we are living in an emerging and immersive global mythology facilitated video mediated narratives. The course is arranged in three phases.

Phase One, Externals: Will examine the history, language, nature, contexts, and role video plays in our everyday lives. Explored will be how the foundational language of the cinema has been transcribed into the populist medium of video and has come not only pervade the way we view the world around us, but also how we view our own lives. This exploration will include the multiple ways by which video constructs history, memory, culture, identity, and the imagination

Phase Two, Internals: Will examine how our video inscribed lives, have become part of an immersive narrative changing the nature and perceptions of reality and the construction of the modern personality. Our experiences of reality are mediated –externally and now internalized—to the point that one can imagine their existence as a series of narrative arcs, character types, and tracking shots. Voyeurism and capitalism are everywhere the imagination can reach; how has the power of commercial television shaped collective memory and the emerging world narrative, its structure and content?

Phase Three, Reaction: Finally, the class itself will become the content and context. Though a series of exercises with a video camera, students will explore and express their inherited video cultural heritage and the video narratives that live within them.

Note: Students need not have previous experience with video or a camera to take the class.

Themes that will inform the course will include: video as art, surveillance, narcissism, record, visual obsession, and communication. Genres examined will be the expressions of, news broadcasting, home movies, commercials, the training film, reality TV, formula Hollywood movies, independent film making, and web diaries/broadcasting, and their attempt to decentralize the power base (who controls the image and narrative?) will also be examined as an act of political activism.

Required Texts:

Simularca and Simulation
Jean Baudrillard
University of Michigan Press

T.A.Z.: The Temporary Autonomous Zone (Paperback)
Hakim Bey Autonomedia

Illuminating Video: An Essential Guide to Video Art
Doug Hall & Sally Jo Fifer, editors, Aperture/BAVC

The Broken Screen: Twenty-five Conversations
By Doug Aitken, DAP press

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

This course requires the active participation of students. Requirements include:
• Completion of required reading and active discussion of material and issues raised by the course.
• A workbook documenting the student’s Video narrative class readings, class notes, responses, and exercises.
• The course will include a number of in and out of class exercises.
• The course will end with the presentation of a group or individual Video Narrative final projects.

© The University of Texas at Dallas School of Arts and Humanities.
No part of this website can be copied or reproduced without permisssion.