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Featured Courses



Comm 215A: Theatre Culture & Society
Professor Tim Good

 Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed.  The course examines Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed, and Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, in specific Latin American contexts of Brazil, Argentina, and Chile.  Grounded in theory and practice of resisting oppression, we interrogate how Boal and Freire work with non-dominant members of societies to claim voice, power, and agency.  Students can do final projects in pedagogy and/or theatre, if they wish, including creative projects.


COMM 291A/401and UNIV 390: Tps: Shakespeare in the Schools
Professor Gigi Jennewein

This course trains DePauw students to direct local middle and high school students in the mounting of fully staged 75-minute cutting of a Shakespeare play.   Students spend the first four weeks in the classroom learning best practice techniques for directing a play, teaching Shakespeare, and working with youth.  The remainder of the semester is spent at a participating Putnam County school leading the participants in creating their Shakespeare production while also delivering the physical, emotional and intellectual benefits that can be acquired through the experience of enacting Shakespeare's language. This course culminates in the Spring Spectacle of Shakespeare, a day-long festival at DePauw University's Moore Theatre (Green Center) comprised of performances of each participating school's play. DePauw's Shakespeare in the Schools program is inspired by and produced in association with Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, MA. The course requires a M/W/F 2:30-5:00 commitment to accommodate transportation and in-school rehearsals.   It is repeatable for credit under different prefixes.  See instructor for details and required SPAC.


COMM 291B: Communication and Game Playing: Deep-Immersion Games and Public Advocacy
Professor David Worthington

In this class students inhabit the role(s) of historical figures in at least two deep-immersion role playing games that require them to argue for specific goals and outcomes. Students study the concepts of contingency, the role of rhetoric in civic decision making, and how liminal space is important for understanding public policy debates. Focus is on public advocacy, argumentation, historically based research and role/rhetor development.


COMM 291C: Film History 
Professor Seth Friedman

Although the recent proliferation of new technologies greatly enhances our access to some moving image media, it also increasingly demonstrates that film history is vast and inexhaustible. In fact, one of the most notable consequences of the digital age is that it has become more challenging to keep up with many interesting happenings in global moving image media. No semester-long course in film history, therefore, could possibly encompass all of the significant developments in world cinema since the advent of the medium in the late nineteenth century. Rather than attempt to provide this inevitably inadequate encyclopedic overview, we will explore how the choices we make about what to study shape and are shaped by our conceptions of world cinema history. To accomplish this objective, this course will indeed cover some of the major trends in global cinema since its inception, concentrating primarily, but not exclusively, on narrative film in Hollywood and other commercial contexts. This focus, in conjunction with associated course assignments, discussions, readings, and screenings, will ultimately make us keenly aware of how emphasizing certain aspects of film history obscure alternative ways to comprehend the impact and story of arguably the most influential medium of the twentieth century and beyond.  


COMM 291D: Activist & Community Media
Professor Kevin Howley

Drawing on insights from media sociology, political economy, and cultural studies, this course examines activist and community media in the new millennium. Viewed in critical relation to corporate and commercial media, community and activist media challenge dominant media institutions and practices, promote local cultural diversity, and exercise symbolic power to effect social change. Cases studies from around the world highlight the social, political, and cross-cultural relevance of local interventions into global media culture. In addition to producing original content for campus/community organizations, students will write case studies that examine historical and contemporary activist and community media projects.


310A: Performance Studies II
Professor Susan Wilson

Building on the foundation established in Performance Studies I (see department course description), Performance Studies II examines and analyzes texts through solo and group performance.


COMM 315A: African Atlantic Theatre
Professor Tim Good

The student will read major theoretical treatises by theater artists and scholars of Africa and the Atlantic diaspora.  The student will prepare critical presentations and papers based on their research.  In addition to studying scholars, artists and their work, the student must include critical analyses of live performances.  The student will see live productions and write critical essays about them, as well as discussing live performance in class.

Specific cultures and performance traditions will be introduced through lecture and assigned readings in performance theory, cultural studies, and dramatic literature.  These issues will be further investigated through small group discussion, critical essays, in-class writings, critical essays, and student presentations.  Particular emphasis is paid to how theoretical application can deepen understanding of performance within culture and other (con) texts.

This course will introduce students to important theoretical applications of performance specific to issues of Africa and the Atlantic diaspora.  At the end of the course, the student will be able to critically discuss issues involving performance theory, culture, civilization, politics, religion, faith, art forms, and dramatic literature. 


COMM 325A: Relational Communication (Adv. Interpersonal Communication)
Professor Melanie Finney

This course focuses on communication in close personal relationships and examines how communication functions on concepts such as intimacy, satisfaction, and support, as well as aspects of the "dark side" of personal relationships such as infidelity, stalking, hurt, and abuse. Prerequisite: Comm 225 or consent of the instructor.