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Cult Film and TV MA

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  • Objectives
    This new, cutting edge MA is the first academic programme of its kind dedicated to the study of global traditions of cult media. It introduces you to the significant global patterns of cult film and television as well as situating these traditions within their appropriate social, cultural and historical contexts. While considering key genres, figures and case-studies from a wide variety of cult traditions, you will also assess the roles that fandom and 'cult consumption' play on constructing meaning within text. Over the last 20 years there has been an explosion of interest around the patterns and traditions of cult film and television. Whether defined by horror, kung-fu or science fiction film, or fantasy television formats such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel, a critical interest in cult media has become a prominent source of interest for the academic and the cult film/TV fan alike. The MA in Cult Film and TV has been designed to allow students to acquire a knowledge of the global traditions of cult media as well as a theoretical understanding of the cultural, social, historical and formal features that underpin these traditions. Taught by internationally recognised researchers in the field of alternative, oppositional and non-canonical screen cultures, this MA will be of interest to graduates who have an interest in the critical study of cult, underground and exploitation media formats and the established theoretical debates that surround the study of such material. The award is organised in conjunction with The Cult Film Archive, Brunel University's internationally recognised research centre into global traditions of cult and underground cinema.
  • Entry requirements
    Entry Requirements You should have a good honours degree in Film and Television Studies or Media and Communications or an equivalent qualification. Applications from international students and individuals with extensive relevant experience are also welcomed.
  • Academic Title
    Cult Film and TV MA
  • Course description
    This new, cutting edge MA is the first academic programme of its kind dedicated to the study of global traditions of cult media. It introduces you to the significant global patterns of cult film and television as well as situating these traditions within their appropriate social, cultural and historical contexts. While considering key genres, figures and case-studies from a wide variety of cult traditions, you will also assess the roles that fandom and cult consumption play on constructing meaning within text.

    Course Details

    You will be introduced to key terms and approaches to the study of the cult text in term one with specialist knowledge enhanced by cinematic case-studies (Eurotrash cinema, Asian cult film, the Shocking seventies) and an examination of cult television. You will have ready access to the Cult Film Archive, housed at Brunel University, which is the only academic research centre devoted to the study of global cult film images with over 3,000 cult films, interviews and resources available to researchers working in the field. Visiting lectures and masterclasses will be given by leading cult filmmakers and industry practitioners to enhance student understanding of industry perspectives. The programme includes workshops, lectures, student-led seminars and presentations, and self-directed projects culminating in the production of a 20,000 word dissertation in term two.>/p>

    Modules (all core)

    Researching Cult Media
    Approaches and issues in studying cult media - (sub)cultural capital and the 'mainstream', contexts of cult production, contexts for defining 'cultdom', fan cultures, critical discourses, aesthetics and taste, censorship.

    Cult Television
    Focusing on contexts, genres and consumption of 'Cult Television' - institutional contexts, authorship, narrative, audience/fandom, style/aesthetics. Case studies include Dr Who, The Prisoner, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The League of Gentlemen.

    Transnational Cult Cinema
    Case study of popular cinemas from Asia Pacific, their national and historical contexts and global consumption - transnational cults, 'Asiaphilia' and 'Asianisation' case studies of Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Thailand, Asian cult filmmakers.

    Shocking Cinema of the Seventies
    Offers an historical and socio-cultural analysis of cult film patterns and trends produced during the 1970s. Particular emphasis will be given to the themes of sex, death and excess that emerged as a dominant trait within European and American cult films produced during this era, while consideration will also be given to issues of genre and narrative form and their impact on the seventies cult text.

    Final Project

    Special Features

    The Cult Film Archive at Brunel University holds over 3,000 cult films/interviews and resources available to researchers working in the field and is the only academic research centre devoted to the study of global cult film images.

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