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The syllabus for 
Illinois Valley Community College's 

Film, Art, and Literature

Film 2010-175
M W at 1:00-1:50 PM in A-321

Fall 2014

Kimberly M. Radek, Professor
Office A-314
Office Hours: 9-11 AM, MW
9:00-9:30 and 2:00-2:30 T
Phone: 815-224-0395
E-mail: kimberly_radek@ivcc.edu

Baz Luhrman's Romeo + Juliet (1996)
  Sir Francis Bernard Dicksee's Romeo and Juliet (1884)

Course Objectives

This course looks closely at the relationship of film, visual art, and literature, focusing most specifically upon the interaction between them from a historical perspective, i.e., how this relationship has changed as the art forms have changed since their inception. Required comparative readings and film and art viewings are a component of this course. 

General Education

This course has no required prerequisites, counts for three hours of General Education credit at IVCC, and transfers to IAI-participating schools as an HF 900 class, and, as such, it must be approached with a serious and thoughtful attitude. In addition, it will help you to attain several of the eight goals, deemed central to IVCC's general education program, specifically:

Goal 1. To apply analytical and problem-solving skills to personal, social, and professional issues and situations.

Goal 2. To communicate orally and in writing, socially and interpersonally.

Goal 3. To develop an awareness of the contributions made to civilization by the diverse cultures of the world, including those within our own society.

Goal 4. To understand and use contemporary technology effectively and to understand its impact on the individual and society.

Goal 5. To work and study effectively both individually and in collaboration with others.

Goal 6. To understand what it means to act ethically and responsibly as an individual in one’s career and as a member of society.

Goal 7.  To develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle, physically, mentally, and spiritually.

Goal 8. To appreciate the ongoing value of learning, self-improvement, and career planning.


Required Texts for Purchase

Adams, Laurie Schneider. Looking at Art. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2002.

Brown, Dan. The Da Vinci Code.  New York: Doubleday, 2003.

Giannetti, Louis. Understanding Movies. 13th edition. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2011.

Martin, George R. R. A Game of Thrones. New York: Bantam Books, 1996.

Style Book. 2011.  (The free online version is sufficient.)

Soles, Derek.  The Prentice Hall Pocket Guide to Understanding Literature. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 2002.

Grading Scale (%)

A  100-90% B  89-80% C  79-70% D  69-60% F 59% and below

Class Participation: 15%
Examination #1: 10%
Examination #2: 10%
Examination #3: 10%
Examination #4: 10%
Form to Content Projects & Presentations (3): 30%
Interdisciplinary Research Presentation: 15% 

Class Participation: You will be evaluated on your contribution and efforts to the class. All homework, group projects, in-class writings, and quizzes will be graded and make up your participation grade. 

The Examinations: You will be tested over the material covered in class lecture material, discussions, and assigned readings and viewings. The examinations may include short answer, multiple choice, true/false, and passage, film, or work identification questions but will be largely comprised of essay questions. These exams will show that you have read or viewed the assigned texts critically and analytically, identifying common themes and techniques in them, and can write clearly about them.
For each exam, there will be film and art viewings or literary selections that you will have to analyze. 

The Projects & Presentations:
As two of the best ways to learn something are through doing it oneself and teaching it to someone else, this is the direction that this Honors class will take. In each of the first three sections, you will produce a piece of art (hence the term project) that corresponds to the type of art we are studying in the unit—either alone or in groups.  Then, you will—either alone or in groups—present that piece to the class, explaining how you chose to exploit the elements available to you within that medium to convey your theme.  Then, finally, you will link these pieces, either in subject or in theme, and deliver a final presentation to the class about the inter-relationship of the three pieces and the three artistic genres. 

Thus, in the Form to Content Presentations you will analyze and evaluate the artistic merits of your created subject, showing how you have used the elements of those artistic medium to communicate the theme of your piece. These presentations should, of course, have clearly stated thesis statements in their first slide or paragraph and comply to the standards given in The Style Book. They should mention the piece's theme and include a handout which offers a selection/copy/photo of the given piece which the class can see or read--and study from later.  These presentation will be given letter grades that will be converted to percentage points before the final semester grade is calculated, and they will be evaluated on audience, grammar, organization, presentation, spelling, and style as well as content.

In the Interdisciplinary Research Presentation your goal is to demonstrate what you have learned about each art form and their interactions with each other.  You will bring closure to your study by explaining the intersections and interconnections between the works you've studies and those that you've created during the semester. Whatever the content of your projects and presentation, I will expect to see you integrate outside research from at least three sources in some way. Likewise, I expect that you will address at least one theory, either of aesthetics or ideology.   Like the earlier presentations, this will be given letter grades that will be converted to percentage points before the final semester grade is calculated, and it will be evaluated on audience, grammar, organization, presentation, spelling, and style as well as content.

Expected Student Outcomes

  Analyze various film techniques and genres to attain a greater understanding and appreciation of the artistic quality of film.

  Analyze various literary techniques and genres to attain a greater understanding and appreciation of the artistic quality of literature.

  Analyze various art techniques and genres to attain a greater understanding and appreciation of the artistic quality of visual works.

  Demonstrate an understanding of the impact that history, politics, and technology have had and continue to have upon the film, art, and literature produced.

  Express the way that society impacts films, art, and literature and the way films, art, and literature impact society.

  Explain the ways that film, art, and literature influence and are influenced by each other.

  Come to conclusions about the roles of film, art, and literature in society and determine their responsibilities to society and to each other.

Skills Necessary for Successful Completion

In this course, you must be prepared to view films and art and read works of literature intellectually, artistically, critically, and analytically and be able to express these ideas both orally and in written form, and demonstrate a knowledge of the history, conventions, and practices of these industries and their interrelation to each other.

Expected Student Behaviors

The student will read/view texts with understanding and appreciation, reacting to and analyzing what he or she has read/seen, by the date(s) they are to be discussed.
The student will participate actively to lectures and discussions, asking/submitting questions for clarification on ideas or issues, if
The student will participate in discussion, offering his or her insights about the literature or asking the class or instructor for clarification on material he or she does not completely understand.
The student will integrate and cite accurately information of other writers, critics, or scholars, using those other opinions, beliefs, and/or observations to support his or her own opinions, beliefs, and/or observations.
The student will synthesize lecture, discussion, and text materials to come to a more solid world view on the impact these arts have and have had upon history, society, and the art world, and vice versa.
 Students will respect each other's personal beliefs and be committed to helping each other learn more about the course information and themselves. Students will help each other become more confident in his or her own unique personal voice and see the authority in his or her own personal experience. 


The College's policy on plagiarism applies in this class; I will question you if your work does not appear to be your own. Keep all notes, outlines, drafts, and finished assignments so that you can demonstrate that writing you have submitted is your own work, should any question of plagiarism arise.

Tentative Class Schedule


Section 1

Literature and Its Elements

Unit 1

18-27 August


Read Fiction Lecture and assigned readings from Understanding Literature
Read Kate Chopin's "The Story of an Hour" and "Désirée's Baby," Edgar Allen Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher," Richard Connell's "The Most Dangerous Game," and Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wall-paper"

Read George R. R. Martin's A Game of Thrones

Begin reading Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code

Quiz #1

Unit 2

3 September

Read Drama Lecture and assigned readings from Understanding Literature
Read Susan Glaspell's "Trifles" and Andrew Niccol's rough draft of Gattaca

Quiz #2
Unit 3

8-10 September

Read Poetry Lecture and assigned readings from Understanding Literature
Read Sharon Olds's "Sex Without Love," Margaret Atwood's "Bored,"  Christina Rossetti's "Goblin Market," Robert Frosts' "The Road Not Taken," and John Keats's "Las Belle Dame sans Merci"

Quiz #3
15-17 September

22 September

Presentations Due: Form to Content on Literature

Examination #1

Section 2

Art and Its Elements
Unit 4

24 September

Read Chapters 1-3 in Looking at Art
Read Art Lecture Notes

Quiz #4
Unit 5

30 September

Read Chapters 4-6 in Looking at Art
Read Art Lecture II Notes

Quiz #5
Unit 6

1 October

6-8 October

13 October

Read Chapters 7-8 in Looking at Art

Quiz #6

Presentations Due: Form to Content on Art

Examination #2

Section 3
Film and Its Elements
Unit 7

15 - 22 October

Read Photography and Mise-en-scene Lecture and Understanding Movies, chapters 1 and 2
View Gattaca and an episode of Game of Thrones, Season One

Quiz #7
Unit 8

27 October

Read Cinema History Lecture
Read Movement and Editing Lecture and Understanding Movies, chapters 3 and 4

Quiz #8
Unit 9

29 October

3-5 November

10 November

Read Sound and Acting Lecture and Understanding Movies, chapters 5 and 6

Quiz #9

Presentations Due: Form to Content on Film

Examination #3

Note: See me or e-mail me by 12:00 PM on 11/3/14 to withdraw from this class.

Section 4
Bringing it All Together
Unit 10

12 November-
8 December


Read Ideology Lecture and Understanding Movies, chapters 10 and 12
View Independence Day and Men in Black

Evaluating The Da Vinci Code
Project Due: Interdisciplinary Research Project
Quiz #10

10 December

Examination #4

The Instructor's Homepage | IVCC Homepage 

Contact Kimberly M. Radek, the instructor of Film, Art, and Literature, at Kimberly_Radek@ivcc.edu

This page was last updated on 08 August 2014. Copyright Kimberly M. Radek, 2001.