RMeS RMa Course: Trending Topics – Engaging Objects

When? 16 & 23 February, 2 & 9 March 12.30 – 17.00 / presentation day: 16 March 2018. 10.00 – 17.00 / deadline paper: date TBA
Where?  Utrecht University
Course? RMa Course: Trending Topics – Engaging Objects
ECTS? 6
Coordinator? Dr Maryn Wilkinson (UvA)
Guest lectures by? TBA
Organisation? RMeS
For? First and second year RMa students in Media Studies, who are a member of a Dutch Graduate Research School (onderzoekschool). Students who are members of RMeS will have first access. RMeS staff and PhD researchers are welcome to sit in on specific sessions; please send an e-mail to RMeS if you intend to attend one or more seminar sessions: rmes-fgw@uva.nl.
Registration

General description:

Each spring, the Research School for Media Studies offers an RMa course where faculty members from eight participating universities (UvA, UU, VU, EUR, UL, UM, RUG, RUN) present the latest research in their fields of interest through a series of lectures and workshops. The course invites RMA students to participate in an international, cutting edge research environment, while earning credits towards their degree. It presents a unique opportunity to get to know other students and leading academics from all over The Netherlands, in an open setting of engaging and ambitious exchange, that can prove particularly fruitful for students who are aspiring to pursue a future career in academic research or teaching. All eight universities accept the credits earned in this module.

The field of media studies today is decreasingly tied to specific media types (film, television, or digital media) or practices (e.g. journalism), and instead often turns towards the areas of interaction between them, and their shared concepts and ideas. Larger trends such as globalisation, digitisation and convergence have prompted researchers to study the complex interrelation of technological changes and media content, as well as the new relations between users and producers, while different modes of media consumption have brought about new areas for aesthetics and politics that continue to require intense critical enquiry. These crossovers are both theoretically and methodologically challenging. Moreover, it requires us to rethink our engagement with specific media objects, and our critical analysis skills. Close reading remains incredibly important, but it can no longer stay isolated. In order to improve and enrich our understanding of the media objects we engage in our research, it is important to understand where different perspectives add to, overlap, or digress from one another.

In the Trending Topics – Engaging Objects course, the first four lecture sessions each take a specific ‘media object’ as a primary case study (one from film, television, digital media and journalism), and bring two guest lecturers and their respective areas of expertise into dialogue about this object. Each afternoon is dedicated to intense analysis and group discussion about the selected objects. A fifth session revolves around student presentations for the final written assignment. All sessions, assignments, readings and preparatory work are supervised and marked by dr. Maryn Wilkinson (UvA), the coordinator of the course. The grading is based on both the presentation (30%) and the final written assignment (70%).