Modern

Revolution

HUM 410 | SFSU | DR. ROB THOMAS

This is the website for Dr. Thomas’  Modern Revolution course at San Francisco State University. The course covers philosophical, social, and cultural issues of modernism/modernity, roughly from 1850—1945. We will read Benjamin, Nietzsche, Kafka, and Walser for primary modern sources and secondary works from Celeste Olalquiaga, Michel Foucault and others. We will look at artwork and film, particularly early cinema by Méliès and the Lumiere brothers, modern cinema from Dziga Vertov and Jean Painlevé, and study dada/dadaism in historical perspective. We will also analyze two Disney films, Return to Oz and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and Todd Haynes’ meditation on glam rock as an untimely social revolution in Velvet Goldmine. Ways of making the modern subject through discursive practices—pornography, sexuality, and gender—and their historically constructed technologies will also be studied.

Background image: Velvet Goldmine. Background video: Institute Benjamenta by the Bros. Quay.

Modern Revolution