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  3. Melodrama, Ideology and the Cinema

Melodrama, Ideology and the Cinema (SCRN40005)

HonoursPoints: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelHonours
Subject codeSCRN40005
Semester 1
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject analyses the history, aesthetics and critical discourse of cinematic melodrama across global art cinema and Hollywood filmmaking traditions and contemporary practices. It addresses melodrama’s origins in, and continued engagement with, other visual and performing art forms, especially those heavily reliant upon musical expression. Melodrama represents the social and political world in domestic and personal terms. Students will consider the way cinematic melodrama addresses questions of ideology in terms of audience, emotion, embodiment, identity, psychology, gender and sexuality. Extrapolating on melodrama’s concern with the local, this subject focuses on the work of the filmmaking ensemble itself and considers melodrama as a mode of aesthetic address relying on specific creative practices and performative traditions.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  • understand the central critical considerations of the representation of class and ideological conflict in cinema melodramas from the early silent to contemporary cinema; and
  • understand the way in which issues of film form, gender, sexuality and psychoanalysis inform melodramas representation of class in the cinema.

Generic skills

At the completion of this subject, students should gain the following generic skills:

  • skills in research;
  • possess advanced skills of critical thinking and analysis;
  • possess an ability to communicate knowledge intelligibly, economically and effectively; and
  • have an understanding of social, ethical and cultural context.

Last updated: 3 April 2019