DMA 163: Narrative - Winter 2021




Gelare Khoshgozaran


Yuchi Ma


The question of how ‘we’ arrived here to observe and speculate on what is out there in the universe is both a historical and philosophical one. The answer to this question determines how we relate to one another as humans, to the other species on earth, life and death, and our view of the world beyond the planet. Philosophy, religion, science, arts and their overlapping boundaries are only some of the fields in which the knowledge to answer these questions is produced through narration. These narratives shape our conception of the past, present and future, our ethics and principles, hopes and despair, personally and as a community. As such, narrative is both individual and collective; it’s local and universal; it’s perpetual but always in flux, and inevitably political. The works of film and video, histories, exercises, texts and discussions throughout this course provide opportunities to understand the formation of different narratives. The course materials are regarded as case studies to deconstruct narrative in various forms: cinema and time-based media, fiction, advertisement, the institutional narrative, the personal and the historical narratives, the narratives of Capitalism, colonization and imperialism in both their formation and undoing. This class invites you to pay attention to how information, events and lives are organized through the narrative form. We look closely at how text (language), image, and sound as the main components of storytelling work together to create meaning, invoke emotions and thoughts. As such we use narrative as a lens to understand power dynamics, in order to more purposefully and thoughtfully use it in our creative process.


Syllabus: (additional material for student reference)
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