The Evergreen State College  •  Olympia, WA


  L I G H T S ,  C A M E R A ,  E L E C T I O N  !  
  FALL 2004  
  T U E S D A Y / 6 - 9 p m / Seminar 2 , D - 1105   • •   [ weeks 1 - 7 ONLY : last class is Nov. 9th ]  


R U T H  H A Y E S :::::::::::::::::

J U L I A   Z A Y ::::::::::::::::::::::


COM 357:::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Sem 2, D-4102 :::::::::::::::::::





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Perfect Leader (1984)
Triumph of the Will (1934)
Primary (1960)
Journeys With George (2002)
Secret Ballot (2001)
Four More Years (1972)
  > R E Q U I R E M E N T S   F O R   R E C E I V I N G   C R E D I T

• Credit will be awarded for Attendance and completion of Media Journal Assignments

• Media Journals are due in class on Tuesday, November 2nd [Election Night, Wk 6]

• Media Journal Assignments:
1. In-class notes and responses to all works screened
2. Notes and responses to assigned outside viewing and reading [CHOOSE at least one (1) per week from this site to read and respond to]
3. Notes and Responses to Selective Media Deprivation exercise [details TBA]

  > F U R T H E R   R E A D I N G  /  V I E W I N G : <<ALSO see LINKS in individual weeks below>>

• "US Presidency and Television"

  • "Political Processes and Television"
• "The Kennedy-Nixon Presidential Debates, 1960"
  • "The History of Televised Presidential Debates"
  • CTRL+CLICK for PDF "The Audio-Animatronic Candidate" by Frank Rich. The New York Times Oct 12, 2003 [on Schwarzenegger’s campaign for Calif. Gov.]
  • CTRL+CLICK for PDF "Paar to Leno, J.F.K. to J.F.K." by Frank Rich.  The New York Times February 8, 2004 [on Kennedy and Kerry and late-night TV talk shows]
  • CTRL+CLICK for PDF "3 Hours, 4 Nights, 1 Fear" by Frank Rich.  The New York Times  July 25, 2004 [on 2004 remake of The Manchurian Candidate and US 2004 election]
  • CTRL+CLICK for PDF "How Kerry Became A Girlie-Man" by Frank Rich. The New York Times September 5, 2004
  • CTRL+CLICK for PDF "Live from Miami: A Style Showdown" by Alex Williams. The New York Times September 26, 2004 [on the 1st 2004 US Presidential Debate]
  Electoral Collage: A Portfolio in Artforum Sept 2004
Inspired by artist Richard Serra, who produced the widely distributed print Stop Bush this past spring, Artforum invited fourteen artists to ring in the election season by making original politically themed works for publication in the magazine. Here, view Serra's print along with Elizabeth Peyton's John Kerry, April 1971, Rachel Harrison's Saratoga Horse Auction, Isa Genzken's Empire/Vampire, Who Kills Death, and Laylah Ali's untitled work.

FILM ANALYSIS TERMS <ctrl+click HERE to download PDF>

  > S C H E D U L E
    jump to week:

1. P A G E A N T R Y     Tue 28 Sept

Triumph of the Will (1934) Leni Reifenstahl, Germany, 110 min.

<< LINK to an excellent website on the history of Body Culture and the use of "Mass Ornaments" in Communist societies>>

<< LINK to Susan Sontag's 1975 essay "Fascinating Fascism" on fascist aesthetics, Reifenstahl, and Triumph of the Will>>

> Assignment: VIEW either the first or second Presidential Candidates’ debate, Thursday 9/30, 6 pm (pdt), or Friday, 10/8, 6pm (pdt)


2. A C C E S S             Tue 5 Oct 

excerpts from:
Primary (1960), Robert Drew [with Richard Leacock, Albert Maysles, D.A. Pennebaker] U.S., 60 min
Four More Years (1972) Top Value Television [TVTV], U.S., 60 min.
Spin (1995), Brian Springer, U.S., 56 min.
Journeys With George (2002), Aaron Lubarsky & Alexandra Pelosi, U.S., 79 min.

<< LINK to brief overview of the history of American Television Documentary>>

<< LINK to bio and filmography of Robert Drew>>

<< LINK to brief article on Robert Drew and Primary>>

<< LINK to excellent capsule history of Activist Television, including TVTV>>

> Assignment: if you did not view the first Presidential Candidates’ debate on 9/30, then VIEW the second one: Friday, 10/8, 6pm





3. C A N D I D A T E   A S    M E D I U M      Tue 12 Oct

• excerpt from Primary Colors (1998), Mike Nichols, U.S., 143 min.
• excerpt from Tanner ’88
(1988), Robert Altman, U.S., TV series
The Perfect Leader
(1983), Max Almy, U.S. 4 min.
Millhouse: A White Comedy
(1971), Emile de Antonio, U.S., 92 min.

> Assignment:

• VIEW the third Presidential Candidates’ debate, Wednesday, 10/13, 6 pm

READ Roland Barthes’ essay "Photography and Electoral Appeal" from Mythologies [pp.91-93]  Ctrl+Click to download PDFs: Barthes 1  Barthes 2

<< LINK to an excellent online overview of the concepts that underpin Barthes' argument>>

NEW! << "My Fake Candidate: Robert Altman and Cynthia Nixon talk about Tanner" by Joy Press. The Village Voice September 28th, 2004>>


4. B U F F O O N E R Y     Tue 17 Oct  

Betty Boop for President (1932), Dave Fleischer, U.S., 7 min.
From Cartoongate compilation:
Hell-Bent for Election (1944), Chuck Jones, U.S., 14 min.
I Like Ike [Eisenhower campaign TV spot] (1952), Disney Corp., U.S.
Popeye for President (1956), Seymour Kneitel, U.S., 6 min.
Reaganocchio (1984), Ken Kimmelman, U.S., 4 min.
The Death of Stalinism in Bohemia (1990), Jan Svankmajer, Czechoslovakia/UK/Germany, 14 min.
Slim Pickin's (1991), from his Cowboys series, Phil Mulloy, UK, 3 min.
• Cartoons from > Puck Magazine; > Tom Tomorrow > Mark Fiore

<< LINK to essay "The Wager of a Militant Surrealist: On Jan Svankmajer's The Death of Stalinism in Bohemia" by Wakagi Akatsuka>>

<< LINK to site "Uniting Mugwumps and the Masses: Puck's Role in Gilded Age Politics" (1996) by Daniel Henry Backer. This excellent site surveys the history of US political cartooning in Puck magazine. Includes images and information from this week's lecture.>>

> Assignment: CONDUCT Selective Media Deprivation Experiment: For one week avoid all mass media EXCEPT ONE of your choosing from the following list: TELEVISION, RADIO, PRINT/PRESS, INTERNET. This means cutting out all others entirely (except for email if this is essential to your life). Choose a medium that you usually use the least to use to get information, news, distraction, stimulation in your daily life. You may have to do a little research to find out what sources you'll use. Remember that libraries + bookstores have newspapers, magazines, and journals to browse. Keep a daily journal about the experience. Describe the entire experience, not just how the information you get is different/similar from/to other media.

<<For example, how does this experiment require you to change your schedule or redesign your trip home? If you decide to read newspapers in a public place like a library reading room but usually get your news from the internet or a TV at home, what is that like? What happens or can happen when you go to a public place to read the news? What are the implications or potential meanings of this?>>

And how is the 2004 election represented in this medium? What places/sources/stations/channels did you choose to look at in this medium and why? You should be deliberate in your choices--look at a range of sources in the medium you choose: large/mainstream/corporate-owned sources, medium-sized ones, small, fringe, independent, radical ones, etc.

Be creative, and make a plan for yourself so that your week is productive.



5. S U F F R A G E       Tue 26 Oct
• archival footage from WIS TV, Columbia SC
(1966, 1972)
• archival footage from Fox Movietone Newsreel Archives
(1928, 1929, 1932, 1944)
Secret Ballot
(2001), Babak Payami, Iran, 105 min.

<<LINK to a 2002 interview with Babak Payami>>



6. M E D I A   C I R C U S    Tue 2 Nov
• Election Night Viewing




7.   P O S T    M O R T E M    Tue 9 Nov