Media, Art, Culture and Society

Korea University

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Media, Art, Culture and Society

  • Host University

    Korea University

  • Location

    Seoul, South Korea

  • Area of Study

    Art, Asian Studies, Media Studies

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations

    Lower

    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credits

    3
  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4
  • Overview

    Course Description:

    Cultures and societies stand at the intersection of diverse traditions, ethnicities, race, value systems and other categories of identification. Among the many nodes that constellate this colorful landscape, members of certain communities who bear social markers that stand apart from the perceived mainstream or the upper strata of social hierarchy are labeled “minority,” and are often represented in ways that frame their presence as alien— strangers in their own home land. Whether it be outright discrimination, unsavory stereotypes, or their satiric appropriations that seemingly subvert but also insidiously reinforce deeply ingrained prejudices, mechanisms of alienation permeate our society on countless fronts. Situating the contemporary mediascape in this broader context of minority discourse, this class invites students to problematize accepted metrics of normalcy and investigate their modes of delivery across different mediums, asking questions such as the following: could the use of racial, ethnic, and cultural stereotypes be justified when framed as critical commentary? How are we to demarcate the thin line between appropriation and inordinate reproduction? What happens when “otherness” as concept becomes translated (in other words, technologized) across mediums such as from written text to visual media, and how may we understand the gaps and misalignments that constitute this process? How does technology, in communicating indexes of otherness or as a source of power in the age of global capital, serve as a double-edged sword in addressing the issues of alienation when specifically applied to the Asian context? The course will provide an introduction to theories and critical reflections that pertain to key concepts in postcolonial/decolonial discourse, including the ‘other,’ hybridity, identity, and ethnicity through works by scholars such as Homi K. Bhabha, Edward Said, Gayathri Spivak, and explore contemporary media productions that represent the multivalent facets of otherness across TV, film, written fiction, and more. Students will engage in group presentations, in-class writing, plenary/small group discussions, and media projects.

    Course Objectives:

    • Explore various forms and concepts of otherness including alienation, transplantation, difference, hierarchy, and discrimination through the lens of works that feature unique stylistic, thematic, and genre or medium-specific characteristics 
    • Examine the interactive relationship between the agents and agencies involved in the process, perception, and institutionalization of otherness by looking into issues such as social justice and ethical integrity, the formation and illusions of racial identity, trauma and healing, nation-building and world-making, diversity and hybridity, etc.
    • Understand how the discursive nexus of theories or critical reflections on race, ethnicity, and culture may contribute to, contradict, and shape our own understanding of otherness in a wider context 
    • Enhance student ability to understand the role of formal structure and narrative strategies in different media
    • Develop critical skills to situate and understand the texts not only within the socio- historical rubrics they arise from, but also in connection to the contemporary world and our own lives

    Assignments:

    • All students are welcome to, and even expected to bring their laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices to class. However, this liberty comes with responsibility. Do not digress from class discussions (such as browsing unrelated content, hanging out on social media platforms, checking email, etc.)
    • All readings and materials available on the Web or Google Drive

    (details to be shared in class). There is only ONE text to purchase: The Shadow Hero, by Gene Luen Yang (available in ebook format on Amazon)

    Readings:

    Read or view all assigned materials before coming to class. This is a seminar; the class cannot “happen” without your input.

    Group Presentations:

    Sign up for group pres slots on the first day of class. Present for 30 min., and then lead class discussion for at least 15 min. The most standard format would be Powerpoint, but the use of various media is encouraged.

    An excellent presentation is expected to possess the following qualities:

    • Introduce basic information about the text/author and historical context
    • Provide close readings of scenes, sequences, or segments of interest from the text
    • Reflection on the medium, effect and use
    • Develop and share critical questions the class could collective reflect on
    • Accurate use of sources, citations (MLA style), and references
    • A critical treatment of sources that is not limited to mere summary or description
    • An engaging and eloquent style of verbal and written performance
    • Make sure to understand and avoid plagiarism
    • Group presentations require collaboration. Ensure proper role division.

    Individual Presentations:  

    Throughout Week 6, in an academic conference format. Pick a topic/material of interest, develop a thesis, and analyze. The group presentation experience would serve as a great practicing ground for the solo presentation. Keep the following in mind:

    • There must be a clear thesis/argument that guides subject matter for the presentation. In other words, articulate the significance of your critical intervention.
    • Provide close readings of scenes, sequences, or segments of interest from the text
    • Reflection on the medium, effect and use
    • Accurate use of sources, citations (MLA style), and references
    • A critical treatment of sources that is not limited to mere summary or description
    • An engaging and eloquent style of verbal and written performance
    • Make sure to understand and avoid plagiarism
    • Submit any and all material used for final presentation after class performance in email attachment

    Reflection Essay:

    Students will also compose and submit a (min.) one-page reflection essay that summarizes the presentation in written form. Times New Roman font (size 12), one-inch margins on all sides, must have a concrete title, and proper formatting (course title, name, etc.) on the top left. The reflection essays are due on the last day of week 5 (Friday, midnight). Submit word document as email attachment. Format should be [your first name_final].

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.