Jun 25, 2021  
Catalogue 2020-2021 
Catalogue 2020-2021 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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FILM 233 - The McCarthy Era and Film

1 unit(s)
This class focuses both on the history of anti-communist involvement with the American film industry and on the reflection of this troubled era in post-war films. We trace the factors that led to The House on Un-American Activities Committee’s investigation of communist influence in Hollywood, the case of the Hollywood Ten, the operation of the blacklist and its final demise at the end of the 1950s. We look at films overtly taking sides in this ideological conflict, such as the anti-Communist I Was a Communist for the FBI and the pro-labor Salt of the Earth, as well as the indirect allegories in film noirs and science fiction. Reading assignments are drawn from a wide range of sources, including HUAC transcripts, government documents, production histories, and genre studies. The course concludes with a look at how more contemporary films such as Good Night and Good Luck have sought to frame our understanding of this era. Sarah Kozloff.

Prerequisite(s): FILM 175  or FILM 210  and permission of the instructor.

Two 75-minute periods plus outside screenings.

Not offered in 2020/21.

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