Male Melancholia: Crisis Masculinity

Eugene Lang College Lib Arts: Culture and Media

Liberal Arts

Undergraduate Course

Degree Students

Male Melancholia

Spring 2020

Taught By: Masha Tupitsyn

Section: AX

CRN: 5579

Credits: 4

[Tracks C, S] Post-war cinematic representations of white American masculinity are very different from the hardboiled, taciturn, yet romantically robust men of the 1930s and 1940s. Freud noted that mourning and melancholia are both responses to loss. While feminist discourse has forced women to continually redefine and reimagine gender roles, white masculinity has increasingly taken melancholic form and gone into crisis, on and off the screen. Previously bolstered by normative structures and hideouts like war, marriage, and economic provider, post-war masculinity has failed to interrogate and reimagine itself alongside other social justice movements. This has resulted in screen portrayals of male backlash, breakdown, gaslighting, inertia, and depression—both serious and comic. In this class, we will read theoretical and literary texts and compare early instances of onscreen male melancholy—Montgomery Clift in A Place in The Sun, James Dean in East of Eden and Rebel Without a Cause—to more recent examples of crisis masculinity wrought by global neo-liberal precarity and the MeToo/TimesUp movements—Noah Baumbach’s Greenberg and Marriage Story, Gaspar Noe’s Love, Spike Jonze’s Her, Terence Malick’s post-millennial men in Knight of Cups, and Joaquin Phoenix’s 2019 anti-comic translation of the Joker. [Tracks C, S]

College: Eugene Lang College Lib Arts (LC)

Department: Culture and Media (LCST)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Max Enrollment: 18

Add/Drop Deadline: February 9, 2020 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 12, 2020 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Waitlist*

*Status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 5:01pm 12/15/2019 EST

Meeting Info:

Days: Monday

Times: 12:10pm - 2:50pm

Building: Academic Entrance 63 Fifth Ave

Room: 300

Date Range: 1/27/2020 - 5/11/2020