Archive for 2021

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[Commlist] Online Publication – Teaching Nontheatrical and Useful Media

Sun Feb 21 11:34:09 GMT 2021

*Teaching Nontheatrical and Useful Media*

JCMS Online Dossier, edited by (Brown University), Joseph Clark (Simon Fraser University) und Tanya Goldman (New York University), and Sophia Gräfe (Philipps-Universität Marburg) with contributions by Marie Sophie Beckmann, Philipp Dominik Keidl, Rebecca Puchta, Philipp Röding, Benjamin Schultz-Figueroa, Danny Tayara, and Charles Tepperman.

"Teaching today has turned all instructors into nontheatrical and useful media makers. As the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed instruction online, teaching has become an exercise in media production, with instructors and staff filming, editing, and distributing moving images in advance or streaming them live. These new developments in mediated pedagogy—or rather the radical acceleration of recent trends toward online teaching—demand critical reflection from educators across the entire academy, and from media scholars in particular. The burgeoning scholarship on nontheatrical and useful media provides special insight into the use of moving images in the classroom, and teaching these subjects—at all levels of the curriculum—offers students and instructors the opportunity to reflect on our own uses of media technology today.

In recent decades, an increasing number of scholars have turned their attention to the study of “useful media”—educational and training films, industrials, newsreels, travelogues, home movies, and more. As Charles Acland and Haidee Wasson point out, these media are characterized less by their artistic and entertainment goals than by their “ability to transform unlikely spaces, convey ideas, convince individuals, and produce subjects in the service of public and private aims.”[1] The scholarship on these media forms and their frequently “nontheatrical” viewing spaces charts alternative geographies of media experience, mapping an expansive and diverse network of production practices, exhibition contexts, and reception sites.

This teaching dossier argues for the inclusion of the histories of nontheatrical and useful media in the classroom and beyond, as well as for the methodological possibilities of studying and teaching these media forms (…)"


Editors' Introduction
Hongwei Thorn Chen, Joseph Clark, Tanya Goldman, and Sophia Gräfe

Toward an Eclectic Film History Survey
Tanya Goldman (New York University)

Film Studies on the Go: "Pacing" as a Method for an Embodied Study of Useful Film Marie Sophie Beckmann, Rebecca Puchta, and Philipp Röding (Goethe University)

Useful Cinema and Its Institutional Contexts: Archival Finding Aid Research Assignments
Philipp Dominik Keidl (Goethe University)

Taking a Turn on the Rewind: Strategies for Experiential Learning in Nontheatrical Film History
Charles Tepperman (University of Calgary)

Things to Come: Teaching Film Studies for Our Scientific Future
Benjamín Schultz-Figueroa and Danny Tayara (Seattle University)

Mapping the Nontheatrical Field: A Useful Teaching Bibliography
Hongwei Thorn Chen (Tulane University) and Sophia Gräfe (Philipps-Universität Marburg)

Link: <> "Teaching Media" is dedicated to sharing ideas and resources for pedagogical practices. JCMS Teaching Dossier journal publishes short essays on pedagogical topics in film and media studies.

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