This module explores how genre functions as a central principle in cinema and television to organise, differentiate and brand content, inform and
inspire creativity, and to attract and satisfy audience expectations. Focusing on a series of case studies of specific genres in cinema and television, it
also investigates how genres involve elements of convention and novelty and how the boundaries between distinctive genres have become
increasingly open and blurred.
Module will run
Semester 1 2023-24
The module aims:
to introduce you to the centrality of genre as a key principle of product differentiation and creative organisation in film and television
to introduce you to the concepts, methods and terminology necessary for a critical analysis of genre and its function within film and television production and reception
to acquaint you with the development of genre theory and criticism in film and television studies
to acquaint you with particular constructions and uses of genre in film and television history
to provide a more detailed understanding of the creative uses of genre within contemporary film and television production
to provide a more detailed understanding of the importance of genre in the marketing and consumption of contemporary films and television programmes
Module learning outcomes
By the end of this module, you are expected to:
understand the characteristics and function of genre as a critical concept, as a means of product differentiation and as a creative context for production in film and television
gain a familiarity of the primary characteristics and uses of genre in film and television history and the developments of particular genres over time
be able to analyse films and television programmes in relation to the conventions, structures and creative possibilities of genre
understand the significance, the creative application and the institutional function of genre in contemporary film and television production and consumption
The module will begin with an introduction to the concept of genre and how it functions in contemporary cinema and television. Other key contextual issues will include how genre provides a fundamental organisational principle in stimulating and structuring creativity, and informing organizing production promotion and consumption of moving image content and the role of genre in the convergence of screen media. The rest of the module will feature a series of case studies of specific genres that will consider how these have both maintained distinctive characteristics and been subject to a dynamic process of change and transformation, including the creation of new hybrid genres.
The formative group seminar presentation provides ways of exploring ideas that will directly inform the second summative and final module assessment. These will be prepared and presented during the seminars in groups of three or four, one per week over the final five weeks of the module.