Fiction and Nonfiction Narratives

Course Code: MPS 5001

Academic Year: 2017-2018

This course is designed to explore the evolving relationship between storytelling as a cultural practice and the transitioning mediums used to communicate their meaning to an increasingly fragmented media audience. Students will first establish an appreciation for the importance of the medium within the communicative exchange and then work toward a mastery of a variety of storytelling platforms by way of historical examination. From a targeted exploration of significant developments in color technology and sound production in the early days of filmmaking to the rise of the serial television program, students will develop a fluency in 'traditional' mediums before delving into the social and technological developments that have precipitated a pervasive shift toward Internet Television. Once students have developed an exhaustive understanding of the multifaceted and evolving nature of the storytelling medium throughout the last century, the focus of this course will shift toward production. Drawing on course material, students will be asked to design a narrative strategy with the intent of targeting a specific media audience. Written in the form of a proposal, students will outline the narrative itself, characterize its intended audience and, referring to the many historical precedents discussed in the course, establish a rationale for the chosen medium or mediums. While students are expected to develop a fluency in the mediums and their individuated characteristics, it is the primary aim of this course for students to develop strategies for the monetization of their own primarily linear fiction and non-fiction narratives that are both personalized and plausible. In combination with a targeted, multi-platform approach that considers the media consumption habits of a specific audience, students will draw on their knowledge of media history to forecast future trends in emerging mediums.