Spring 2024

Writing Together: Film and Feminist Collectivity

Listed in: English, as ENGL-385  |  Film and Media Studies, as FAMS-309  |  Sexuality, Women's and Gender Studies, as SWAG-309


Amelie E. Hastie (Section 01)


(Offered as ENGL 385, FAMS 308, SWAG 309) As an artistic and industrial form, film depends on acts of collaboration. Such acts take place at the level of production, whether on a Hollywood lot that might employ hundreds if not thousands of people to make a single film or in an independent artisan’s work in which one primary maker works with the subjects she films. Collaboration is also necessary in the exhibition of films:  across the expanses between widescale distribution at multiplexes around the world, arthouse and repertory cinemas, and small-scale screenings at galleries or colleges. And then, of course, film invites a response from its viewers; in the words of Modernist novelist and film critic Dorothy Richardson, viewers and films “cooperate” with one another. Drawing on these intrinsic facets of film, this seminar will link film to feminist action, which is itself dependent on collective action. Specifically, we will explore what happens when we link film and feminism historically, analytically, and, for the purposes of our class, through the act of writing. The subjects of our writing will be women-directed films. Though we will consider some earlier models of women makers, our attention will be focused on global artists working in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. As we explore their films, our coursework will be divided into three units, which will invariably overlap with and sustain one another. Hence, we will explore writings about film by various feminist “collectives”; we will produce individual essays in a workshop format; and we will collectively produce a means of exhibition of the work of the students beyond our classroom.

Limited to 20 students. Spring semester. Professor Hastie.

How to handle overenrollment: Preference will be given to FAMS and English pre-majors with previous coursework in FAMS courses, but my hope is that the course will draw students from throughout the college.

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: textual and cultural analysis of films; emphasis on written work; original research; collaborative work as writers and editors

ENGL 385 - LEC

Section 01
M 2:00 PM - 3:20 PM CONV 209
W 2:00 PM - 3:20 PM CONV 209