SAC 485 - The Global Screen
Section: 001 The Future of Television and New Media
Term: WN 2008
Subject: Screen Arts and Cultures (SAC)
Department: LSA Screen Arts & Cultures
Enforced Prerequisites:
Junior or Above.
Advisory Prerequisites:
Junior standing; FILMVID/SAC 230 or 236.
May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credit(s). May be elected more than once in the same term.
Primary Instructor:

Television is — to borrow from Ernst Bloch’s characterization of the city of Berlin in the nineteen twenties — a medium that never is but always is in the state of becoming. Right now we are witnessing how the emergence of digital technologies, the new online economy, and convergence fundamentally transform the medium’s institutionalization, social function, and cultural identity; or — as the title of a Dutch TV-documentary proclaimed in 2000: “This Is the End of TV as We Know It”. But what is television’s future?

In this course, we will investigate recent and current transformations of television as a technology and cultural form. We will address technological developments (a.o. ‘hybrid television’, HDTV, interactive TV, WebTV, the mobile/flexible screen); we will survey changing practices of production, distribution and reception (a.o. the future of networks and public broadcasting, advertising, participatory television, cross media branding); and we will discuss new textual forms of television (a.o. interactive TV, multiplatform storytelling, aesthetic of webisodes, vlogs, snippets on YouTube, etc.).

Starting from early visions of television, we will revisit some classical critical writing on technological innovation, television and culture (Williams; McLuhan; Winston); and we will read more recent critical and speculative articles discussing the transformation of television (reader, ed. by Spigel & Olsson) to be equipped to do our own case studies of emergent forms of television. The focus of this course in the future of television is twofold: It offers the students skills to

  1. critically reflect on the complex and mutually dependant processes of technological, economic, social and cultural transformations, and
  2. to design some meaningful research into the cultural implications of technological transformations

SAC 485 - The Global Screen
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
MW 2:30PM - 4:00PM
002 (LAB)
M 7:00PM - 9:30PM
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