Summer Session I 2016 [June 20 - July 29, 2016]
Humanities 002A. "Humanities v. Mathematics" has been cancelled.
Summer Session II 2016 [August 1 - September 9, 2016]
107 Cruess Hall
Note: HUM 002A can be repeated one time for credit if topic differs.
Course Description: In the past year, reality TV stars have used their celebrity to “break the Internet” and run for president. Academics tend to associate the popularity of reality TV with viewers deprived of a liberal arts education, but educated Americans are just as eager to watch as their underprivileged counterparts. This course explores the idea that reality television, with its controversial, morally questionable celebrities, originated in, and has much in common with, celebrity icons from the “Age of Reason.” We will take an interdisciplinary approach to the topic by exploring eighteenth-century journals, letters, poetry, biography, as well as portraits and satirical prints of the period, alongside contemporary representations of these figures in film, television, biography and adventure tourism, and, of course, reality TV. In our comparisons, we will consider how modes of fictionalized reality represent the values of a given culture, how celebrity icons take on more or different characteristics over time, and the extent to which reality-based media value social responsibility of celebrities and their fans.
GE credit (Old): Arts & Humanities.
GE credit (New): Arts & Humanities, World Cultures, and Writing Experience.
Format: Lecture; Writing.
About the Instructor: Renee Bryzik is a Graduate Student of English.