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Master Syllabus

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Administrative Unit: Language and Communications Studies Department
Course Prefix and Number: COMM 334
Course Title: Political Economy of Film and Media
Number of:
Credit Hours 3
Lecture Hours 3
Lab Hours 0
Catalog Description:

Examination of the film industry and mass communication outlets as they pertain to political economy. Through the study of ownership as a business strategy and cultural construction, students explore the cultural influence of mass communication. Prerequisite: COMM 214 or 224.

Prerequisite(s) / Corequisite(s):

COMM 214 or 224

Course Rotation for Day Program:

Occasional offering.

Text(s): Most current editions of the following:

Open Wide: How Hollywood Box Office Became a National Obsession
By Hayes, Dade & Jonathan Bing (Miramax Books)
The Big Picture: The New Logic of Money and Power
By Epstein, Edward Jay (Random House)
Hollywood Cinema
By Maltby, Richard (Blackwell Publishers)
The Movie Business Book
By Squire, Jason E. (Fireside)
Course Objectives
  • To understand the basic theoretical basis of political economy.
  • To introduce the cultural impact of film as an industry.
  • To recognize the integrative nature of the mass media.
    Measurable Learning Outcomes:
  • Identify and articulate the basic principles surrounding political economy.
  • Recognize and identify the various corporate roles in making films.
  • Develop critical thinking and writing skills as they analyze the business structure of one particular media conglomerate.
  • Identify and employ critical skills in explaining their position in consumer culture.
  • Apply advanced level organizational and analytical skills when discussing media industry research.
  • Demonstrate advanced mastery of cultural influence by way of mass media.
    Topical Outline:
  • Size and ownership
  • Vertical integration
  • Horizontal integration
  • Production
  • Exhibition
  • Distribution
  • Ethics and anti-trust in political economy

    Recommended maximum class size for this course: 25

    Library Resources:

    Online databases are available at http://www.ccis.edu/offices/library/index.asp. You may access them using your CougarTrack login and password when prompted.

    Prepared by: Amy Darnell Date: October 11, 2011
    NOTE: The intention of this master course syllabus is to provide an outline of the contents of this course, as specified by the faculty of Columbia College, regardless of who teaches the course, when it is taught, or where it is taught. Faculty members teaching this course for Columbia College are expected to facilitate learning pursuant to the course objectives and cover the subjects listed in the topical outline. However, instructors are also encouraged to cover additional topics of interest so long as those topics are relevant to the course's subject. The master syllabus is, therefore, prescriptive in nature but also allows for a diversity of individual approaches to course material.

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