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Film & Media Studies


The Wizard of Oz

Film and Media Studies seeks to understand the moving imagesomething that, in its totality, we are very familiar with, engage with, use to communicate, and are entertained by, almost every day. Simply watching lots of media does not teach us how media works, and how media works on us—as individuals and as a culture. Film and Media Studies encompasses the study of the moving image in everything from cinema to television to video art to the Internet to video games and well beyond—any moving image that can be seen on any kind of screen. Our goal is to understand how moving images are made and why, and to become very powerful analysts and critics of moving images and their contexts. The initial task is to become aware of the moving image, something we know so well that we typically forget to ask questions of and about it. Coming to this greater critical awareness involves knowing what's in the frame, literally, and also what surrounds the frame—what are the formal, historical, cultural, technological, industrial, ideological, political and social contexts that make any moving image—and the whole idea of the moving image—meaningful to us. Seeing is a culturally learned set of processes, and Film and Media Studies helps us come to understand more fully how meaning is made by moving images and by their makers, and how meaning is made by us, the spectators. The world is only getting more mediatized, and students need to understand how to navigate that world, as consumers, critics, and makers of media.

News & Announcements

In October 2016 the faculty approved a stand-alone major in Film and Media Studies. For the requirements of the new major, see The Major.

If you are finishing a Five College Major in Film Studies, the requirements can be found on the Five College Major in Film Studies website.


End-of-Year Celebration!

All FMS majors, minors, alums, family and friends are welcome.

Saturday, May 19, 2018, 4-5 p.m.

Kahn Liberal Arts Institute, 21 Henshaw Avenue




Congratulations to Julia Sagasar '20J!

Julia's film, An Aural Anthropocene, was selected for screening at the 10th Annual Acton-Boxborough Cultural Council Our World Film Series Short Film Night on Friday, April 27, 2018, 7 p.m., at the Acton Town Hall in Acton, MA.



For more information, see our News & Events page.