Fall 2012

The Role and the Self

Listed in: Film and Media Studies, as FAMS-242  |  Theater and Dance, as THDA-155



(Offered as FAMS 242 and THDA 155.) We “act” everyday. We play roles as students, as friends, as city-people, country-people, cosmopolitans. But what does it mean to present oneself publicly, either as “oneself” or in a role of another? The goal of this course is to demystify the acting process, to imagine together how we might “act naturally” in a world that is overwhelmed by technological forms of communication that both enable exchange with one another and that hamper it.

We will read a range of texts, from Erving Goffman’s Self and Everyday Life, to poetry and drama, and we will watch a series of films. Our attention to these works will be to understand the choices we can make as actors, and what choices directors make in their work with actors. Ultimately, the goal of this course is to understand human behavior itself.

Limited to 30 students.  Fall semester.  Croxton Lecturer Howard.


Artistic Practice


2022-23: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2012