Spring 2014 Wednesdays 8:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Center for Documentary Studies, CDS Bridges 113
Kimberly J. Jenkins Chair for
New Technologies in Society
lenoir A-T duke D-O-T edu
Smith Warehouse Bay 11 Rm. A231
Office hours: TBD
Course email list: TBD
Director, MFAEDA Program
tom D-O-T rankin A-T duke D-O-T edu
Office hours: By appointment
patrick D-O-T h A-T duke D-O-T edu
Smith Warehouse Bay 11 Room A-241
Office hours: By appointment
Experimental and Documentary Arts: Telling Realism
Spring 2014 Wednesdays 8:30-11:30 AM
Center for Documentary Studies, CDS Bridges 113
The course explores the construction of selected avant-garde, underground, alternative, counter culture and experimental practices in the theoretical context of artist's manifestos and writings, as well as in the related secondary and tertiary literature from the humanities and social sciences to sciences, with special attention to critical literature in art history and cultural and visual studies. Students will examine such artistic production in the context of modernist and poststructuralist theories and methodologies from formalism to postmodernism, postcolonial theory, and current twenty-first century approaches. Students will articulate a personal and/or group relationship to the current potentials of the "experimental" through multiple practice- based assignments..
Instructors: Timothy Lenoir, Tom Rankin Patrick Herron
Download syllabus (pdf; REVISED 27 March 2014 @ 12:33 PM)
Week 1: Wed. January 15
Introduction to our viewpoints on 'documentary' and 'experimental'; wrestling with the ideas of 'truth' and the real, of the 'actual' and the hyperreal in our contemporary situation.
Introduction to Experimental and Documentary: Telling Realism
Week 2: Wed. January 22
Walter Benjamin, "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction." In Illuminations: Essays and Reflections, 217-251. New York: Harcourt Brace & World, 1968.
The Culture Industry
Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno, "The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception." In Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments, Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 2002, pp. 94-136.
Ben Shahn, "Artists in Colleges," and "The Education of an Artist." In The Shape of Content, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1957, pp. 1-24; 111-131.
Eudora Welty, "Words into Fiction." In Eudora Welty, On Writing, New York: The Modern Library, 2002, pp. 60-73.
Week 3: Wed. January 29
James Agee and Walker Evans, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1988, pp. i-122.
Near a Church: Agee and Evans
Week 4: Wed. February 5
The Cruel Radiance of What Is
This week's presenter: Aaron Kutnick
James Agee and Walker Evans, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1988, pp. 123-end.
Week 5: Wed. February 12
First-Person Witness and Stark Literality
This week's presenters (2): Grant Yarolin and Aaron Canipe
Harriot Jacobs, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. New York: W.W. Norton, 2001 (originally 1853), pp. 45-53.
S. G. Howe, Report to the Freedmen's Inquiry Commission 1864: The Refugees from Slavery in Canada West. New York: Arno Press and the New York Times, 1969 (reprint from 1864), 1-6.
Henry Mayhew, London Labour and the London Poor: The Conditions of Earnings of Those That Will Work, Cannot Work, and Will Not Work. Volume II, London Street-Folk. London: Charles Griffin and Company, 1851. pp. 152-173.
J. Thomson and Adolphe Smith, Street Life In London. London: Sampson Low, Marston, Searle and Rivington, 1877. pp. 7-11.
FIRST BLOG POST ON WEEKS 2-5 DUE FRIDAY FEBRUARY 14
Week 6: Wed. February 19
Observing, Intervening, Disrupting
This week's presenters (2): Ava Lowrey and Tracy Fish
Jane Addams, Twenty Years at Hull House (1910)
Jacob A. Riis, How the Other Half Lives: Studies Among the Tenements of New York (1924) and The Making of an American (1901)
Lewis Hine, "Child Labor in the Canning Industry of Maryland" (Ms. report, 1909) and "Social Photography: How the Camera May Help in Social Uplift" (Speech, National Conference of Charities and Correction, Buffalo, New York, 1909)
Hortense Powdermaker, "Entrée into Indianola" from Stranger and Friend: The Way of an Anthropologist (1934)
Zora Neale Hurston, "Proposed Recording Expedition into The Floridas," unpublished manuscript from the Federal Writer's Project, Library of Congress, 1939.
Paul Strand, "Photography" (Seven Arts, 1917) and "Realism: A Personal View" (Sight and Sound, 1949)
Robert Flaherty, "Filming Real People" (Movie Makers, 1934)
John Grierson, "Propaganda: A Problem for Educational Theory and for Cinema" (Sight and Sound, 1934) and "The Documentary Idea" (The Complete Photographer, 1941)
Week 7: Wed. February 26
This week's presenters: Alina Taalman and Anna Kipervaser
Guy Debord, "Preface; Separation Perfected; the Commodity as Spectacle." In The Society of the Spectacle, 7-10; 11-17; 29-31. New York: Zone Books, 1995.
Guy Debord, Gil J. Wolman. "A User's Guide to Detournement." From The Situationist International Anthology, 2006. Trans. Ken Ken Knabb. Originally appeared as "Mode d'emploi du détournement" in Les Lèvres Nues, #8, May 1956.
Downloaded 27 July 2011 from http://www.bopsecrets.org/SI/detourn.htm.
"WTO Announces Formalized Slavery Model for Africa," http://gatt.org/wharton.html;
Film: The Act of Killing, dir. Joshua Oppenheimer, 2012.
Week 8: Wed. March 5
Documentary Turns A Little Personal
This week's presenters (2): Mendal Polish and Windrose Stanback
Robert Frank, John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship Application (1955), Statement (U.S. Camera Annual, 1958), Interview (Photography Within the Humanities, 1977)
Albert Maysles, "Truthful Witness" (Interview by H. Namicy, Quarterly Review of Film Studies, 1981)
Ed Pincus, Interview with G. Roy Levin (Documentary Explorations, 1971)
Robert Adams, "Two Landscapes" from Why People Photograph: Selected Essays and Reviews (1988)
Harry Crews, A Childhood: The Biography of a Place (1978)
Nan Goldin, "If I Want to Take a Picture, I Take It No Matter What" (Interview with A. Mazur and P. Skirgajillo-Krajewska, Foto Tapeta, 2003)
Bill Burke, They Shall Cast Out Demons, Nexus Press, 1983.
Ross McElwee at Work, "An Interview with Ross McElwee," by Gil Lahav, The Harvard Advocate, 1994.
Whitney Dow and Marco Williams, "Through Segregated Lenses," interview by Tom Rankin in Document, 2002.
SECOND BLOG POST ON WEEKS 6-8 DUE FRIDAY MARCH 7
Week 9: Wed. March 12
NO CLASS: SPRING BREAK
Week 10: Wed. March 19
Mediatization of the Subject in Postmodernity
This week's presenters (2): Matt Cicanese and Haodong Li
Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1994, pp. 3-61.
Mark Andrejevic, "2. The Promise of the Digital Revolution; 3. Rediscovering Reality," In Reality TV: The Work of Being Watched, 23-60; 61-94. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2004.
Frederic Jameson, "Postmodernism: Or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism." New Left Review 146, no. July-August (1984): 53-92.
Jean Baudrillard, "Ch.3: The Gulf War Did Not Take Place." In The Gulf War Did Not Take Place, 61-95. Bloomington, Indiana: Indiana University Press, 1995.
Film: Enemy Image: Propaganda in War, parts 1-9. Dir. Mark Daniels. France, 2005.
Parts 1-9 begin at http://bit.ly/1hPoXsr
Clip of Marshall McLuhan on television: "Marshall McLuhan on the TODAY Show," http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZF8jej3j5vA
Film: Moon, dir. Duncan Jones, 2009.
Film: Blade Runner, dir. Ridley Scott, 1982 (Final Cut, 2007)
Music Video: Björk, "All is Full of Love," dir. Chris Cunningham, 1999.
Week 11: Wed. March 26
Roy Stryker, "Documentary Photography" (The Complete Photographer, 1942)
The Camera is the Picture
Marion Post Wolcott, Letters between Post and Roy Stryker (Ms. papers, University of Louisville, 1938-1940)
Louise Rosskam, Letter to Roy Stryker (Ms. papers, University of Louisville, 1944)
Gordon Parks, Interview by Martin H. Bush (Wichita State University, 1983)
Roland Barthes. Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography, pp 3-10; 25-32; 76-89; 106-107; 115-119. New York: Hill and Wang, 1980.
Susan Sontag. "In Plato's Cave," and "The Heroism of Vision." From On Photography, pp. 1-19; 65-87. New York: FSG, 1973 (republished in Instabook pdf 2005).
Errol Morris, "The Anti-Post-Modern Post-Modern," Talk.
Errol Morris, "The Case of the Inappropriate Alarm Clock, Parts 1-7," The New York Times, October 18-24, 2009.
Film: The Thin Blue Line, dir. Errol Morris, 1988.
William Mitchell, The Reconfigured Eye, Chapter 1, pp.1-57; Chapter 9, pp. 190-223
mitchell_the reconfigured eye_01-223.pdf
THIRD BLOG POST ON WEEKS 10-11 DUE FRIDAY MARCH 28
Week 12: Wed. April 2
Gender, Comsumption, Technics
This week's presenter:
Anne Balsamo, "On the Cutting Edge: Cosmetic Surgery and the Technological Production of the Gendered Body," in Camera Obscura, 1992, n. 28, pp 206-237.
Ella Shohat, "'Lasers for Ladies': Endo Discourse and the Inscriptions of Science," in Camera Obscura, 1992, n. 29, pp 57-89.
Kathryn Pauly Morgan, "Women and the Knife: Cosmetic Surgery and the Colonization of Women's Bodies, in Body and Flesh, A Philosophical Reader, ed. Donn Welton, London: Blackwell, 1998, pp 325-347.
Video: Orlan, "Successful Operation." French with English subtitles, 9:12, 1990.
Video: Orlan, "Omnipresence." French with English subtitles, 1993.
Film: The Cremaster Cycle: Cremaster 3, dir. Matthew Barney, 2002.
Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtjvyQqim50
Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bjxFCC0rgAY
Bernadette Wegenstein, "Getting Under the Skin: Body and Media Theory." Configurations, Volume 10, Number 2, Spring 2002, pp. 221-259.
Bernadette Wegenstein, Chaper 3, "Machinic Sutures: Twentyfirst Century Technologies of Makeover Beauty," in The Cosmetic Gaze, 2010, pp. 156-222.
Film: Made Over in America, dir. Bernadette Wegenstein, 2007.
Week 13: Wed. April 9
The Database Aesthetic
This week's presenters (2): Nicholas Pilarski and Libi Streigl
Dziga Vertov, Kino-Eye: The Writings of Dziga Vertov. Berkeley ; University of California Press, 1995, Annette Michelson, ed., "We: Variant of a Manifesto," pp. 5-9; "The Birth of Kino-Eye," pp. 40-42; "Kino-Eye," pp. 60-79.
Lev Manovich, "Database as Symbolic Form." Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies 5, no. 2 (1999): 80-99.
Film: Kino-Eye, dir. Dziga Vertov.
kinoeye_sm.mov (approx. 600 MB)
Film: Man with a Movie Camera, dir. Dziga Vertov, 1929.
Sharon Daniel, Public Secrets
David Dufresne and Philippe Brault, Prison Valley: The Prison Industry
Week 14: Wed. April 16
Gilles Deleuze, "Postscript on the Societies of Control." October 59, (Winter, 1992): pp. 3-7.
Mark Andrejevic, "1. Introduction; 7. iPolitics; 8. iMonitoring: Keeping Track of One Another; 9. Beyond Monitoring." In iSpy: Surveillance and Power in the Interactive Era, pp. 1-21; 187-211; 212-240; 241-268. Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 2007.
Kevin Slavin, "How algorithms shape our world." TED talk, July 2011. Downloaded 28 July 2011.
Video: Julian Assange, Cypherpunks I and II, June 12, 2012
Part I: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRkDUmT_I_w
Part II: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aitQ2XTaUVM
Von Kai Biermann, "Betrayed by our own data" and "Tell-all Telephone." Die Zeit Online, 26 March 2011.
"Betrayed By Our Own Data": http://www.zeit.de/digital/datenschutz/2011-03/data-protection-malte-spitz
"Tell-all Telephone": http://www.zeit.de/datenschutz/malte-spitz-data-retention
"Inside the Obama Campaign's Hard Drive," Tim Murphy, Mother Jones, September/October 2012.
"A More Perfect Union: How President Obama's campaign used big data to rally individual voters," Sasha Issenberg, MIT Technology Review, 19 December 2012.
"Giving Viewers What They Want: The Media Equation," David Carr, The New York Times, 24 February 2013.
Film: The Intimacy of Strangers, dir. Eva Webb, 2005.
Film: Erasing David, dir. David Bond, 2010.
FOURTH BLOG POST ON WEEKS 12-14 DUE FRIDAY APRIL 18
Week 15: Wed. April 23
"A Modernist's Challenge to Instant Gratification," Joshua Blaustein, The New York Times, 29 July 2013.
Truth, Authenticity and the Resurgence of the Analog
More to come for Week 15
Week 16: Wed. April 30
FINAL PROJECTS DUE