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Semester: 1

Credits: 30

FM4121: Screen Comedy

This module will trace comic forms, genres and theories developed over the course of film and television history. Taking comedy seriously, the module will bring together formal analysis of comic scenes and images, seeking to explore the how and why of funniness, with a broad historical survey, bridging early cinematic gags with Vine videos to explore the broader cultural and political causes and consequences of screen humour. Essential theories of comedy will be in dialogue with each week’s screening, analysing concepts ranging from the grotesque to laughter, the absurd to humour noir. We will focus on several key questions: How does comedy subvert or support social norms, whether they be political, ethnic or gendered? What is the relationship between the comic body on screen and the spectatorial response of laughter? What are the most extreme forms of comic experience? Screenings may include works by Keaton, McCarey, Chytilová, Kusturica, Sturges, Iannucci and others.

Teaching

Lecture, Monday 2.00 - 4.00 pm, Byre Theatre
Screening, Monday, 4.30 - 7.00 pm Byre Theatre

Dr Paul Flaig (Co-ordinator)