Communication and Culture | Introduction to Media
C190 | 11391 | Striphas, Ted

CMCL-C 190: Introduction to Media
Class Number: 11391
Summer Session II

MTuWThF, 9:30 AM-10:20 AM, SY 004
Required film screenings: M and W, 7:00 PM-10:00 PM, BH 005

Required for all majors in the Department of Communication and

Fulfills COLL A&H Requirement

Course Director: Ted Striphas
Office: Mottier Hall 200
Phone: 856-7868

References to the power and prevalence of “the media” are
commonplace.  But what are “the media”?  How do they work and for
whom?  As media increasingly pervade the fabric of daily life and as
fewer and fewer entities dominate media ownership, the urgency of
asking and answering these questions only grows in importance.

Yet these questions are incredibly difficult to ask (much less to
answer), owing in part to the ways in which the structure and
functioning of the media remain, for many of us, taken for granted,
perhaps even something of a mystery.  Thus, this course will
introduce you to the basic vocabularies of visual and media literacy
and hone your skills at critically analyzing media texts,
institutions, apparatuses, and audiences.  We will focus on four
specific (and prevalent) media genres—film, radio, television, and
the internet—and our goal will be to explore the relationships
between and among form, content, ownership, and meaning with respect
to each.   C190 will help you to appreciate more fully the complex
ways in which the media inhabit and affect cultural, political, and
economic life.  More importantly, it will provide you with the
analytical, interpretive, and critical skills by which to navigate
and begin to make sense of the densely mediated landscapes we

Assessment will be based on attendance and participation, screening
notes, two exams,
and two writing assignments.

Required Reading:

Kolker, Robert. Film, Form, and Culture. 3rd ed. New York: McGraw-
Hill, 2005.
ISBN: 0073123617

Newcomb, Horace, ed. Television: The Critical View. 7th ed. New
York: Oxford
University Press, 2006. ISBN: 0195301161.

Additional required readings will be available on electronic reserve.