Multimedia Composition Courses

Fall 2019

In these classes, we will be examining different ways in which digital media has contributed to new modes of thinking about topics of social and cultural importance. Through assigned texts and selected videos, podcasts, and other examples of popular digital media we will be meditating on what creativity and communication means in the 21st century. In addition to working with the assigned course texts, students will have the opportunity to develop projects that utilize digital media in order to generate their own ideas around the question, what does it mean to be connected in the digital age?

This course satisfies one SAS Core Requirement
Area of Inquiry: Arts and Humanities; Critical and Creative Expression [AHr]

Section                          Subtitle                           Instructor Day/Period* Location Index Campus
01 At Home: What Does it Mean? Kearney Th/3,4 MU-038 08955 CAC
02 Food, Culture & Politics in the Digital Age Hoboyan M,Th/2 MU-038 08956 CAC
03 Storytelling in the Digital Age Ahmed Th/2,3 MU-305 08957 CAC
04 Documenting YOUR World McCarter W/5,6 MU-305 09319 CAC
05 Curiosity and Expression Lowe M/3,4 MU-302 17692 CAC
07 Words About Music Warren F/2,3 MU-038 12677 CAC
08 Documenting YOUR World Madden M/6,7 MU-305 09901 CAC
09 Documenting YOUR World Hulme M,W/5 MU-038 10327 CAC
10 The  End of the World: Adventures in Deep Listening Fitzgerald M,W/7 MU-038 10360 CAC
11 Rewriting and Remixing: Making it New Fuhrman M,W/5 AB-2100 11959 CAC
12 Storytelling in the Digital Age  Ahmed M/2,3 MU-305 12996 CAC
13 Documenting YOUR World Bryan Th/4,5 MU-305 14373 CAC
14 Documenting YOUR World  McCarter T/6, 7 MU-038 14374 CAC
15 Documenting YOUR World McCarter T/4,5 MU-038 14375 CAC
16 Documenting YOUR World Chambers W/3,4 MU-001 14376 CAC
17 The Self Online: Personal, Political  New Dimitrov T/2, 3 MU-003 16813 CAC

*Honors College students and SAS Honors students enroll in Section H1

H1 Curiosity and Expression Bielecki T/2,3 MU-305 11528 CAC
H2 Curiosity and Expression Votipka Th/2, 3 MU-302 19637 CAC

01 - At Home: What Does it Mean?
What is home? Is it a place of belonging, of safety, of refuge? Must it be something that we call ours, that we identify with? Or can home be a dwelling in bewilderment? What happens when we don’t feel at home, when we don’t belong? In this class, we will develop work that documents the shapes and contours of our intimate dwellings and the stories of those who inhabit them. Through videos, podcasts, and graphic illustrations, students will develop narratives around questions of home and estrangement, investigating how each specific digital media employed can serve as a unique lens to view both feeling at home and feeling estranged. Students of all backgrounds and disciplines welcome!

02 - Food, Culture & Politics in the Digital Age 
Multimedia appeals to various senses, but not all of them at once. How can students use digital platforms to create something that comes close to experiencing the real thing of food? Additionally, how can social media disseminate information about the food world, specifically agriculture and the politics that surround it? How can these media bring awareness to the forefront and encourage social action? In this course, students will consider these questions as they engage with all varieties of food literature (novels, restaurant reviews, political essays, how-to videos, food blogs) and how their own identities are created through food. As a result of our discussions, students will create a podcast, a video essay, and other related assignments.

03, 12 - Storytelling in the Digital Age
Students will hone their creative writing and critical thinking skills, to learn the various styles and formats of storytelling in the digital age. You will create a digital portfolio which is a personal blog of your work throughout the semester. The portfolio will include – personal narrative, podcast, video essay, film critique, blog posts on current events, well-thought-out final essays or short fiction. How do we tell stories in the digital age? Are the possibilities endless? Let’s find out!

04, 08, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 - Documenting YOUR World
Sometimes, it feels like The News has everything covered: politics, entertainment, climate change, business. But there’s something only you can report on: The story of your everyday life. How your immediate world keeps changing. Is there a new graffiti artist in town? Is something fresh happening in the local music scene? Has your circle of friends changed its view on an issue? Is a new fashion trend emerging on campus? Through blog posts, a podcast, and a video project, we’ll keep track of micro-stories like these, analyzing and exploring them in different ways.

05 - Curiosity and Expression 
How are our perceptions of art, communications, and information changing as a result of wide spread access to digital technologies and various digital media platforms? This course provides students the opportunity to explore the conceptual challenges that have emerged from the ever expanding digital world that we inhabit through blog postings, group exercises, and individual digital media projects that provide hands on experience of what it is like to compose and share works that are both thought provoking and entertaining.

07 - Words About Music
“Writing about music is like dancing about architecture” (Martin Mull, Frank Zappa, Elvis Costello, etc.). From the earliest days of concert reviews and album liner notes, journalists have been struggling to find words to describe the sounds that they hear when listening to music. The blogging world has brought many more voices into this cultural conversation, which at times can be both perplexing and fascinating. The current digital music landscape has become a thriving and vibrant community that has its roots in a long tradition of fanzines, concert bootlegs and mix tapes. Now more than ever, both artists and their respective audiences are engaged in a dynamic conversation that is not only changing how we talk about music, but also how artists are creating music. Through careful study of texts, blogs, podcasts, videos and recordings, students will evaluate how music is discussed and written about and become active participants in the larger social media conversation. Over the course of the semester, students will produce several blog posts that critique live musical performances, review albums and explore their deeper thoughts on musical style and culture. In addition, each student will produce a podcast and a video essay that takes traditional musical journalism off the page and into the aural and visual domains.

09 - The Fluid Page 
Digital media has altered not only the way we create and consume information, but it has also profoundly altered how we value that information; furthermore, it has changed the way we think. The realm of digital media is growing and changing so rapidly that even the experts often have trouble making sense of what tools like blogs, social media, and digital publishing mean for the future of human communication. In this class, we will be critically examining the ways that digital media has inspired us to reconsider permanence and fluidity, as they relate to information. Through assigned texts, websites, videos, and podcasts, students will rethink the modes of presenting information and find what it means to contribute to the perpetually updated World Wide Web. Students will also develop projects using digital media in order to explore their own personal questions about what it means to create and consume media in the Digital Age. 

10 - The End of the World: Adventures in Deep LIstening 
Throughout this course, we will use a combination of text, audio and moving images to interpret our inner and outer worlds into visions of Utopic or Dystopic communal experiences. The semester will focus around three major units—the first being Image, the second being Audio, and finally a Poetic Film. For each, students will create and respond to contemporary poets, artists, multimedia and other filmmakers that help us redefine the motifs of our collective lives. We’ll explore the work of Arthur Jafa, Eileen Myles, Jordan Peele, John Cage, Andy Warhol, Chris Marker, Korakrit Arunanondchai, Moyra Davey and others as we ask how do we transmit our ideas of heaven and hell in the form of slideshows, experimental selfies, internet viral videos and acoustic landscapes? 

11 - Rewriting and Remixing: Making it New

In this class, we will read essays about and study examples of how artists and writers use found materials and take inspiration from works of pop culture, literature and myth to explore their own emotions and ideas. To start, students will create poems and works of flash fiction that reinvent other writers’ narratives and borrow from existing languages and tropes. Later, students will translate these written pieces into audio works and short videos that use sounds and images from the public domain. As a final project, students will design a personal website that showcases their creative work.

17 - Self Online: Personal, Political & New
In the late 1960s Andy Warhol famously predicted the cultural moment we find ourselves in by saying that "in the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes." How has online culture given us the tools for self-representation? How does that representation open out onto larger questions about gender, race, sexuality, and art-making? We will explore these questions through documenting how we participate in online communities and also with each other via text, email, comment threads, etc. We will make videos, poems, and use social media as a creative platform. 

* Honors College students and SAS Honors students enroll in Section H1 & H2

*H1 and H2 (Honors) - Curiosity and Expression
How are our perceptions of art, communications, and information changing as a result of wide spread access to digital technologies and various digital media platforms? This course provides students the opportunity to explore the conceptual challenges that have emerged from the ever expanding digital world that we inhabit through blog postings, group exercises, and individual digital media projects that provide hands on experience of what it is like to compose and share works that are both thought provoking and entertaining. Taught at Honors level.

*Period numbers/times for College Avenue Campus: 1   8:10 AM to 10 AM 2  9:50 AM to 11:10 AM 3  11:30 AM to 12:50 PM 4  1: 10 PM to 2:30 PM 5  2:50 PM to 4:10 PM 6  4:30 PM to 5:50 PM 7  6:10 PM to 7:30 PM 8  7:40 PM to 9 PM 9 9: 10 PM to 10:30 PM