Summer 2016 - Graduate Course Descriptions

Riccio, Thomas
Discipline and Number
HUAS 6374 Section 591
TR Time 5:30 PM - 10:00 PM
Course Title
Myth in Media

Description of Course:

The class will explore, from a mythological perspective, how we have come to live in a world surrounded by an increasingly pervasive, powerful deluge of media representations. A world where reality incessantly spins, blurs, blends, and folds. A place of extremes, contrasts and contradictions, where what is real, virtual, fact, fiction, illusion, hyperbole, history, memory, culture, identity, brand, imagination, art, and fantasy can reconfigure according to necessity of its moment. Ours is a post-modern world of fragments, modularity, multiple contexts, and truths, performance, self-awareness, reflexivity, and of copies, re-combinations, reinventions, and reconsiderations without originals. It is a world of undergoing a global cultural emergence that is being mediated by new media. We are living in a world with, and immersed in, media. Our way of being and fundamental understanding of self, the world, time and space, is through the medium, form and content, of media. The course will examine the emergence of a media immersed world as part of a transformation, if not cultural and biophysical evolution. That media can instantaneously have a global reach in an intimate and individualized way is unprecedented. Media is facilitating the creation of new mythologies, a new way of being in the world whereby we are becoming a self-aware performer in a narrative we are creating.

Required Texts:

Required Texts
Myth: A very short introduction
by Robert A. Segal

Images and Symbols
by Mircea Eliade

The Hero and the Outlaw
by Mark and Pearson
McGraw Hill Princeton

Flicker: Your Brain on Movies
Jeffery M. Zacks
Oxford Press

Understanding Comics
by Scott McCloud
Wm. Morrow

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

• It is a short, intense course, so attendance and active participation is important.
• 2 in-class projects dealing with aspects of the course theme.
• 1 short reaction paper.
• 1 final project. According to the interest of the student. This includes a 15 minute, in-class presentation

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