The Cinemas of Small Nations
CMS 597 A: The Cinemas of Small Nations
This course introduces students to a variety of national cinema traditions that have been characterized recently as "the cinemas of small nations". These include the cinemas of Singapore, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, Mali, Denmark, to name a few. The course also goes beyond national cinema frameworks and considers "minor" cinematic practices within nation states (the LA Rebellion films in the U.S, or regional art cinema in India) as well as exilic and diasporic film practices that cut across national boundaries. Readings will be drawn largely from film and media studies. Some topics explored include: the limits of national cinema as a conceptual framework, the value of relational and comparative approaches, the influence of film festivals and art cinema in the survival and viability of diminutive film practices, and the role of cinephilia, cult film cultures and technology in enabling as well as transforming access to lesser known film-producing contexts. Writing and research assignments will also require students to utilize Scarecrow Video as a local and vital resource in discovering occluded cinematic traditions and practices.