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ARAB-320 Arab Film
Fall for 2014-2015
  • Ayoub, Dima
  • How has Arab cinema transformed our vision of cinema as well as of history since its emergence on the scene in the early twentieth century? This course will survey Arab cinema from different periods and will consider how cinema is used to explore themes such as gender and sexuality, national identity, war, displacement, poverty, urbanization, colonialism, censorship, language and religion. The course will introduce Arab cinema as a vehicle through which themes of social significance in the Arab world and in the diaspora are reflected upon, analyzed, upheld or challenged. In addition to weekly viewings, we will also read critical material in order to analyze films critically and become familiar with the key theoretical elements of modern critical and cultural theory as they apply to film study and criticism. The films screened as part of the course will not only be analyzed from an aesthetic perspective, but also as socially produced narratives that reveal some of the central tensions and concerns of the culture from which they emerged. Students will be introduced to various genres that characterize Arab cinema such as epic, comedy, drama, documentary, musicals, and historical among others.
    Credits: 3
    Prerequisites: None

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    Fall '14: Khalifah, Omar (description)
    Additional syllabi may be available in prior academic years.


    ARAB-320-70 Arab Film
    Fall for 2014-2015
  • Khalifah, Omar
  • Language of Instruction: Arabic
    Prerequisite: ARAB216 or ARAB221 or placement by exam

    This course examines how cinema in the Arab world constitutes a space through which filmmakers negotiate and reflect on significant political, cultural, social, and aesthetic themes and concerns. Students will learn about certain cinematic genres in the Arab world such as the musical, comic, melodramatic, and epic, and will explore how issues of independence, colonialism, poverty, women’s rights, and political freedom are visually represented. Although Egypt is considered the biggest film producer in the Arab world, the course aspires to represent various cinemas across the region, from Morocco and Algeria to Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Palestine, introducing students to notable moments and phenomena in the history of these cinemas. Of particular interest to this course are filmmakers such as Youssef Chahine, Nacer Khemir, Nabil al-Malih, and Elia Suleiman. The course will be taught in Arabic and all films will be in Arabic with English subtitle. Students have to watch the films outside class and devote class time to discussion. The course will be a chance for students to learn and compare different Arabic dialects that are used in these films. In addition to film viewings, students will be required to read critical and theoretical articles that pertain to class discussion.
    Credits: 3
    Prerequisites: None
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