Much to the delight of film aficionados, when Mary Gates Hall first opened its doors to new undergraduate learning experiences in technology, Professor Jennifer Bean fashioned a pivotal portal: “Cinema 2000: Image and Idea in the Digital Age.”
This seminar allowed seniors in English, Cinema Studies, and Comparative Literature to study in depth and on site the contemporary transformations of culture and cinema. Via critical viewing and concentrated reading (online and off), students debated current alterations of narrative discourses in visual media and fashioned sophisticated written critiques of film narratives, both mainstream and independent. With a number of Internet distribution companies located in the Seattle area, Professor Bean’s students succeeded in corroborating a significant portion of their group project investigations with digital video interviews of independent film makers and Internet executives.
The CIC-housed seminar was thus a great success. As one student wrote at the term’s end, “Cinema needs the aid of technology; [without it] this class would have been the equivalent of mathematics without the numbers.”