Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A class well worth attending - why universities are teaching 'The Wire'

From Slate (via the National Post):
Not content to write about it and discuss it among themselves, academics are starting to teach The Wire, as well. Professors at Harvard, U.C. Berkeley, Duke and Middlebury are now offering courses on the show.
Interestingly, the classes aren't just in film studies or media studies departments; they're turning up in social science disciplines as well, places where the preferred method of inquiry is the field study or the survey, not the HBO series, even one that is routinely called the best television show ever. Some sociologists and social anthropologists, it turns out, believe The Wire has something to teach their students about poverty, class, bureaucracy and the social ramifications of economic change.
Two of the first courses on The Wire were offered last spring. One was taught by Jason Mittell, a media scholar at Middlebury, the other by Linda Williams, a film studies scholar in Berkeley's rhetoric department. What interests Mittell and Williams is the fact that The Wire works despite its subject matter.
To read the full article click here.

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