Monthly Archives: January 2015

From My Notes (HUM415)

One of the ideas that I wanted to get across on Tuesday was that culture doesn’t simply “reflect” the world in a direct, unproblematic manner– i.e., as mere “content”. In any case, “reflection” is just a metaphor. It’s a way of saying that culture acts like a mirror. But why can’t it act as a prism or a pistol or a sponge?

Cultural forms are historical. To read form (i.e., to engage in formal analysis)  is to suggest that the how of a text is as important as the what of a text.

This notion is something like what Zizek has in mind when he argues that Children of Men functions according to the principle of anamorphosis. It’s by looking from an odd angle– focusing on the background of the visual field rather than the foreground– that the socio-political “truth” of Cuaron’s film becomes apparent. In order to understand this fully we need to know a few film terms, such as mise-en-scene. But there are other formal elements in play here as well: framing, camera movement, sound, etc.

Finally, tomorrow we’ll watch this remarkable film text by Mark Boulos:

Reader (HUM225/ HUM303)

I sent this as an email this morning.

 

Hi,

The course blog is analepsis.org. Everything you need to know is there. Look at the tabs at the top of the page for the syllabus, the electronic version of the reader, and the course filmography. The Passport tab contains directions for your first graded assignment. This is an easy A.

I want you to bring hard copies of every reading we discuss in class. You can print out the reader in your own time or buy a bound hardcopy at Dragon Printing at 450 Taraval off of 19th. If you’re headed toward Geary it is on the right.

http://www.dragonprintingsf.com

Truth told buying the bound hardcopy is probably the cheaper option unless you have access to a free printer.

1st Contact (HUM415)

I sent this as an email to the accounts listed on ilearn. Send questions to the comments field of this post please.

Hi,

The course blog is analepsis.org. Everthing you need to know is there. Look at the tabs at the top of the page for the syllabus, the electronic version of the reader, and the course filmography. The Passport tab contains directions for your first graded assignment. This is an easy A.

I want you to bring hard copies of every reading we discuss in class. You can print out the reader in your own time or buy a bound hardcopy at Dragon Printing at 450 Taraval off of 19th. If you’re headed toward Geary it is on the right.

http://www.dragonprintingsf.com

Truth told buying the bound hardcopy is probably the cheaper option unless you have access to a free printer.

The bookstore notified me that it may be difficult to get a copy of David Hawkes’s Ideology (2nd ed.) initially. There is a pdf version of that text on the Free Books page of the course blog but, again, you’d need to print it out.

On Thursday I will give you a “pop” quiz and you’ll do group work. I hope to see you there.

sc

Crime Narrative (HUM303)

The Coal-Train Robberies (demo version)

Yesterday’s coal train came to rest in the bitter cutting
And while the signals took an age to change, it was easy pickings
So you go to the movies where they smash it up
You want to feel your heart pumping, it makes me feel good
All through the karaoke, they were screaming the hits
While another Mercedes-Benz gets blown to bits

Outside a khaki-covered river oozes by
And still they say that there’s a big important world out there to try
“What’s yours is yours, what’s yours is mine,” so say those City of London swine
“So let’s steal something that’s really worth it”

Reports are coming in of a coal train robbery
It’s like another world, or it had better be

Come down the banks where you used to court, your heart pumping
You know where she kissed you as the sweating trains pulled in
A scrap of grime for a glimmer of heat beneath the rails between your feet
You used to pick rags from the workhouse floor
You don’t want much, you just want more
You waited fifteen years for the whistle to blow
When they say “work,” when they say “no”
If you don’t believe that I’m going for good
You can count the days I’m gone and chop up the chairs for firewood

Reports are coming in of a coal train robbery
It’s like another world, or it had better be

Reports are coming in of a coal train robbery
Reports are coming in of a coal train robbery

Inequality for All

From Oxfam:

In 2014, the richest 1% of people in the world owned 48% of global wealth,
leaving just 52% to be shared between the other 99% of adults on the planet.
Almost all of that 52% is owned by those included in the richest 20%, leaving just
5.5% for the remaining 80% of people in the world. If this trend continues of an
increasing wealth share to the richest, the top 1% will have more wealth than the
remaining 99% of people in just two years, as shown on Figure 2, with the wealth
share of the top 1% exceeding 50% by 2016.

OxfamFig2see http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/wealth-having-it-all-and-wanting-more-338125