Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Get Ready Sports Fans!!!

This semester, I will once again be teaching cmns324, Media, Sports and Popular Culture at Simon Fraser University (School of Communication). This time around, however, I get to co-teach the course with a colleague, Danielle Deveaux, which means lecturing half as often, running half of the tutorials and actually getting a chance to get to know many of the students! This course is pretty popular, which means extra big lecture halls and strategic time management, so the opportunity to lead small group discussions in tutorial will be a great way to get a real sense of what everyone is thinking, where the problem areas are, etc. We've divided up the lectures, divided up the labour, divided up the worrying - this should be an interesting experiment in job sharing and I'm really looking forward to seeing how the course unfolds as a thoroughly collaborative project. Since this semester Vancouver is (finally) hosting the Winter Olympics, this should be a particularly timely and compelling series of discussions/lectures/etc.

You can check out the details (syllabus in the final stages of revision) on the course website. As always, I'll be providing links and updates to the course website throughout the semester, and will tweet any links/items that overlap into kids' media using a #cmns324 hash tag (e.g. Mattel's new WWE toyline). Here's the official course description:
The objective of this course is to critically examine the changing relationship between sports and the media within western popular cultures. We will begin with an historical overview of the sport and media industries, and an introduction to some of the key themes and concepts that will be explored over the course of the semester.

During the second section, strong emphasis will be placed on the political economic dimensions of sports media, including production, marketing and commodity flows; the commodification of youth sports and "lifestyle" sports; labour issues and athletes’ rights.

In section three, we will examine media, sport and the politics of “identities”, including national identities and globalization; sports subcultures; the representation of gender, race and ethnicity within sports media; and popular depictions of sports and athletes.

The final section will explore the social, cultural and political meanings of the sporting “spectacle”, as well as the impact of media technologies (both old and new) on sports performance and spectatorship. Discussions will touch upon a wide range of issues and theoretical approaches, with examples drawn from a variety of sports and sporting practices.

I'm pretty sure the course is over full by now, but if you're an SFU student who's interested, you can always check in with the Communication department undergrad advisor to get on the wait list. The course is taught pretty frequently as well, so there's always next time.


Izzy Neis said...

You're so awesome! Kick butt, Professor ;)

Sara M. Grimes said...

thanks so much Izzy!