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Course Detail

Term Fall 2018
Class ARCH 509
Class Title Medusa in the Metro: Urban representation and the gendered gaze
Description This seminar will begin with an overview of “street-literature” (the literary genre that grew out of the modern city, influenced by its capture on film) in order to examine whose voice or gaze has the authority to describe the public sphere, and how these narratives are constructed as dominant, or disseminated as alternative point-of-views. The rest of the semester will be spent investigating the performativity of diverse perspectives in imaging the city, understanding “imaging” as a sequenced cycle of occupation (belonging), observation (the gaze), representation (textual and visual), and production (inclusive place making). We will trace the lingering presence of 19th-century attitudes both in our present conceptions of urban images and onto the urban flesh, and pursue means to willfully inscript an other gaze upon the city. Divided between historical analysis and creative production, the seminar will engage the character of the flâneuse as writer, painter, photographer, cartographer, and the authority of her gaze as cultural apparatus, in order to uphold a contemporary mode of urban image production specific to, rather than concealing of, its subjects. Understanding the city as the locus of the "theatrum mundi," the seminar will borrow from interdisciplinary theoretical fields including film theory and visual studies, feminist performance theory, and urban design. We will question the status of the subject in the production of the city and examine whether the rampant proliferation and circulation of photographs has transformed the status of the subject or reinforced the normativity of dominant narrative forms.
Prereq none entered yet
Crosslist none
Required No
Elective Yes
Selective No
Meets Fridays 9:00am-12:00pm 2108 A&AB
Credits 3
Faculty Mireille Roddier
Syllabus not available
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