Cinematic Tropes as Design Process

Parsons School of Design: Design Strategies

Non-Liberal Arts
Undergraduate Course
Degree Students
Cinematic Tropes
Spring 2023
Taught By: John Bruce and Kosi Dunn
Section: A

CRN: 9312

Credits: 3

In this course we will explore the ways film and cinema can be creatively employed in design-based research. The role of narrative–sense making through stories–is one of the most potent elements of transformation within a design process. Today, more than ever, narratives function to impact beliefs, motivations and actions. The creation and circulation of a variety of cinematic forms of narrative are exponentially prolific. The course proposes theories and modes for the use of cinematic tropes as active tools of the design process. Through a series of film screenings and filmmaking, students will identify and analyze cinematic tropes and examine the qualities of moving images beyond storytelling. Drawing from film and media studies, students will study the language of cinema and experiment with how this might actively contribute to design practice that is strategic and attuned to the complexities of working with people and partners. In the course we will consider issues related to perspective, proximity, temporality, duration, and the nonsequential. Combining practice with theory, students will reflexively engage with the positionality of the designer as participant, co-creator, and narrator. Using film, we will search for those forces that ‘haunt’ the social worlds where design takes shape. This course draws from art, design, and the human sciences and students will gain experience not only in theoretically framing social and political issues as these are expressed through design and film, but also in understanding the methodological tools needed to translate these issues into interventions that are creative and collaborative.

Open to: All upper-level undergraduate students.

College: Parsons School of Design (PS)

Department: Design Strategies (PSDS)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Modality: In-Person

Max Enrollment: 11

Add/Drop Deadline: February 5, 2023 (Sunday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 16, 2023 (Sunday)

Seats Available: No

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every few 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: 12:32am EDT 9/29/2023

Meeting Info:
Days: Monday
Times: 4:00pm - 6:40pm
Building: 66 5th Ave
Room: 819
Date Range: 1/23/2023 - 5/15/2023