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Documentary Film: Access Denied

Description: Sculptor Eric McGehearty incorporates dyslexia, a learning disability, into his artwork to express his challenges with his limited ability to recognize and understand the written word. The film Access Denied focuses on Eric and his disability. Recognized in 1896, dyslexia has been studied and researched by scientists and educators. New assistive technology is now available to aid dyslexics in reading and writing. Specialized schools provide techniques to improve student learning. However, some options are not readily available to the general public; therefore, information about how to deal with the disability is not easily accessed. The aims of this documentary are to raise awareness of available resources to assist with learning as well as to demonstrate a relationship between art and dyslexia.
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Date: August 2006
Creator: Bell, Leah Helanie

True Tales of the Atom

Description: True Tales of the Atom documents the creative process in the making of the film of the same name. It describes the intent and result of each step in the filmmaking process, including esthetic, budget and technical decisions. How the inclusion of animation increased the complexity and technical demands on the postproduction. It shows the problems encountered and overcome working on a production alone. Finally, it details the successful completion primarily due to extensive preplanning. The film on which the paper is based is a non-traditional look at several little-known aspects of civilian nuclear power, with a look at the media that could have helped to shape current attitudes in the United States about the technology.
Date: August 2011
Creator: Westergaard, Jerry

Documentary Film: Love's Story

Description: Abstract Love's Story is a documentary journey into the storytelling world, where the themes of love and memory connect the audience to a unique set of film interviewees. Marie and Alexis provide interesting recollections about their individual pasts, while Cherie guides the course of the film with her expert theories about the nature of storytelling. What initially appears a simple film, actually provides a multi-tiered commentary tackling issues of memory, love, and perseverance. The film equally highlights the nature of storytelling to encourage audiences to critically dissect the stories around them in the world. Presented visually through minimalist animation and aurally through a mix of interviews, sound effects, and music, Love's Story is a poetic film about the process of storytelling and the interconnectedness of the memories individuals tell.
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Date: August 2006
Creator: Meiser, Cory

A Dream Lost in Dream: A Love-Hate Relationship of an Alien with America

Description: Exploring the theme of Diaspora, this paper is an accompanying document for the documentary, A Dream Lost in Dream. It sheds light on the purpose, and process of producing this documentary. The main purpose for the production of this documentary has been described as initiation of healthy and casual dialog between diverse populations in America. It emphasizes the importance of creating visual media targeting masses rather than the elite. It is argued that it can act as a tool of awareness, reducing anxiety in the society. It also embarks on the production journey of the documentary A Dream Lost in Dream. The film is a portrayal of an East Indian immigrant struggling between economic survival, family issues and passion to fly.
Date: August 2011
Creator: Singh, Arvind

Beach Drive: Public Rights and Private Property: A Documentary Film

Description: The Texas Open Beaches Act states that the public beach extends from the water up to the line of vegetation. Once a privately-owned property is submerged, it transfers into state ownership. Because of severe erosion and the shifting nature of vegetation, the Village of Surfside has lost several rows of houses and streets and, currently, over thirty houses are located on the public beach obstructing public access in violation of the Texas Open Beaches Act. The extreme erosion in this small village on the Texas Gulf Coast puts homeowners, property owners, legislators, and beachgoers in difficult positions and many are at odds with one another. The documentary film is structured around rental property owner Russell Clinton, environmentalists Ellis Pickett and Jeff Hooton, and former State Senator A.R. "Babe" Schwartz.
Date: August 2006
Creator: Schoenbaechler, Jessica

A shanda fur de Yehudim: Jewishness in network sitcom television.

Description: This thesis is a cultural study of Jewishness in network sitcom television. Sources for the study included: historical film analysis, sociological studies on stereotyping and Jewish culture. The thesis studies how past forms of Jewishness impacted the current depictions of Jewishness on the television sitcom. After an introduction discussing Jewishness in general, the second chapter studies Jewishness in Vaudeville and early Hollywood film. The third chapter studies Jewishness in the first 40 years of network sitcom television. The fourth chapter studies Jewishness in the network sitcoms of the 1990s. The conclusions of the study focus on the state of Jewishness on network sitcom television at present, and ask what must be done within the industry to maintain a viable Jewish identity on network sitcom television in the future.
Date: August 2004
Creator: Minnick, Susan L.

The “Nigger Trinity”: Engaging the Discourse in Post Civil Rights/Post 1960s America

Description: The cultural and popular media landscape of the United States of America changed after the Civil-Rights movement of the 1960s. The word “Nigger” was changed during that same period of American history. There are several authors and a comic that helped change this word during the 1960s. The post Civil-Rights American has a different experience and understanding with this word than those born before 1970. This work triangulates the current cultural location of the word “Nigger,” “nigga,” and “the n-word” using linguistics, law, and two media case studies. The “Nigger” trinity is a model that adds value to the discourse that surrounds this one word in post civil-rights/post 1960s America.
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Date: December 2011
Creator: Bell, Adrian Shane

Documentary Film: I Named Her Angel

Description: Recent political developments in the world show us that different cultures need to know and understand each other better. Even though technological developments like the Internet, satellites, cable television and conglomeration of big media entities have made mass communication more effective and faster, we cannot easily say that these developments help to bring world cultures together. As a result, mass audiences are not very much able to see what few productions do speak to these issues in a constructive manner. The main aim of this documentary film project is to serve as a small step towards helping different cultures to understand each other better. This documentary film conveys the basics of Mevlevism by following the formal gatherings of a Mevlevi den in Istanbul, Turkey. A den or tekke is a place where Islamic people gather and perform their religious activities. During these gatherings they do the sema, they pray, they listen to music, and they discuss spiritual matters. Sema is the entire ritual they perform as part of their ceremonies including listening to music, singing and chanting to attain a state of religious emotion and ecstasy or vecd. The documentary film is structured around a twelve year old girl, Elif, who is learning the basics of Mevlevism. The interviews conducted with regulars from the den explain to the audience why people are attracted to this belief system. Filming the ceremonies at the 550-year-old Mevlevi temple in Galata, Istanbul accentuates the historic background of this belief system. The Night of Reunion is the day in which Mevlevis celebrate the passing of Mevlana Celaleddin Rumi, the founder of Mevlevism and provides the climax of the film. Elif performs on that night, a very important moment in her spiritual life.
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Date: May 2005
Creator: Dinc, Nefin

Confronting Convergence: Are Higher Education Administrators Using a Strategic Planning Approach to Mass Communication Curriculum Convergence?

Description: Professors in mass communications departments of higher education institutions continue to search for the best way to prepare graduates for the ever-changing world of print, broadcast, and online media. Business administration theories have long been used in other areas, including education. While some application of strategic planning has been documented with regards to education, there is not much to reference in this area. The study investigated the use of strategic planning in developing a course of action for curriculum convergence in mass communication programs. The study used a purposive sample to determine if administrators are utilizing this method as a part of curriculum convergence. The results indicated a use of this method among institutions involved in curriculum convergence.
Date: May 2010
Creator: Huckeba, Kristyn L.

Out of Date

Description: Out of Date chronicles the filmmaker's personal journey as she tries to untangle her mixed feelings on singlehood and romance, and turns to the older generation for advice, tales of love and stories of success or failure. The documentary links and contrasts different generations' experiences in love and dating. Also, the film deals with loneliness, commitment, gender differences, and social and cultural practices of love and dating.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Lazcano Aguirre, Libia

The future of local television news: Is there a possible strategic planning approach?

Description: This study compared the characteristic of strategic planning as used in the corporate world with the planning process used in a sample of television news departments. The purpose was to determine if commonalities exist; in what circumstances, and whether techniques and approaches used for many years by businesses could advance the process of planning in the fast-paced environment of local television news. In-depth interviews were conducted with a sample of highly experienced local news managers. The results indicated some similarities in planning approaches but suggested significant differences in how the two industries approach key elements of traditional strategic planning. The primary conclusion drawn from the research suggests the local television news industry has informally adapted strategic planning processes to their needs with heavy emphasis on tactical execution.
Date: August 2005
Creator: Slocum, Phyllis R.

Snakes Alive!

Description: On three days in March each year, the sleepy little town of Sweetwater, Texas transforms into the rattlesnake capital of the world. Snake hunters and curious tourists converge on the town of 12,000 for the Annual Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup. On the outside of the Nolan County Coliseum, the smell of funnel cakes and hot-dogs fills the air as vendors sell snacks and souvenirs. However the real action is inside where snakes collected from all over the state lay in piles by the thousands, waiting to be sexed, milked and ultimately killed. Through interviews and observational footage, "Snakes Alive!" explores the Sweetwater Rattlesnake Roundup, those that participate in the event, and the elements that make it an unabashed West Texas tradition.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Greer, Daniel

Theoretical and Practical Record of the Making of the Documentary Film, A Native American Dream

Description: This textual record of the making of the social issue documentary film A Native American Dream examines theoretical and practical considerations of the filmmaker during the pre-production, production, and post-production stages. It also examines the disciplines of anthropology and ethnography in terms of modern documentary filmmaking and evaluates the film within these contexts.
Date: August 2008
Creator: Daggett, Liz

Lowest of the Low: Scenes of Shame and Self-Deprecation in Contemporary Scottish Cinema

Description: This thesis explores the factors leading to the images of self-deprecation and shame in contemporary Scottish film. It would seem that the causes of these reoccurring motifs may be because the Scottish people are unable to escape from their past and are uneasy about the future of the nation. There is an internal struggle for both Scottish men and women, who try to adhere to their predetermined roles in Scottish culture, but this role leads to violence, alcoholism, and shame. In addition, there is also a fear for the future of the nation that represented in films that feature a connection between children and the creation of life with the death of Scotland's past. This thesis will focus on films created under a recent boom in film production in Scotland beginning in 1994 till the present day.
Date: May 2008
Creator: McCracken, Michael

"According to Their Wills and Pleasures": The Sexual Stereotyping of Mormon Men in American Film and Television

Description: This thesis examines the representation of Mormon men in American film and television, with particular regard for sexual identity and the cultural association of Mormonism with sexuality. The history of Mormonism's unique marital practices and doctrinal approaches to gender and sexuality have developed three common stereotypes for Mormon male characters: the purposeful heterosexual, the monstrous polygamist, and the self-destructive homosexual. Depending upon the sexual stereotype in the narrative, the Mormon Church can function as a proponent for nineteenth-century views of sexuality, a symbol for society's repressed sexuality, or a metaphor for the oppressive effects of performing gender and sexuality according to ideological constraints. These ideas are presented in Mormon films such as Saturday's Warrior (1989) as well as mainstream films such as A Mormon Maid (1917) and Advise and Consent (1962).
Date: May 2009
Creator: Sutton, Travis

"There's A Man With A Gun Over There": Cops And The Counterculture

Description: By 1960, television advertisers recognized the economic potential of American youth, and producers were expected to develop programs to attract them, while still maintaining appeal for the older audience members. This task was to prove difficult as the decade wore on. While continuing to link the nation's cold war concerns to the portrayal of good and evil, some shows, like 77 Sunset Strip, and The Mod Squad, explored alternative lifestyles, but still accepted American values. As the 1960s developed, crime programs continued to promote American hegemony but became increasingly more open to alternative reading strategies. This study examines the strategies developed to draw a youth audience to 1960s crime programs, while also supporting the dominant ideology of American society.
Date: December 2001
Creator: Moellinger, Terry

Our enemy, ourselves: Political conspiracy in American cinema, 1970-present.

Description: This thesis is an examination of "paranoid conspiracy" films, a film noir subgenre that emerged in mainstream American cinema in the early 1970s and turns on vast, shadowy conspiracies located within U.S. "power structures" (government agencies, the military, the media) and directed against the American public. Specifically, it focuses on the emergence of these films in the 1970s, their almost complete disappearance during the Reagan presidency, and subsequent reemergence in the early 1990s. Placing representative texts in the context of U.S. political and social reality of the last three decades, it analyzes the relationship between the conspiracy theory genre, the "crisis of confidence" in the American society, and the process of formation of American national identity.
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Date: August 2003
Creator: Budziszewski, Przemyslaw

Education for Education's Sake? Exposing the Arts District of Downtown Dallas

Description: This thesis discusses the relatively new approach of art education, by paralleling it to Marxist ideology on art. The Dallas Arts District is one example of a city where museum art education is in conflict: being adopted more vigorously by some and with less acceptance by others. In order to provide a glimpse into the museum ideology of downtown Dallas, previous schools of thought regarding the role of curators and the introduction of educators into museums will be detailed, as well as conflicts between these two factions. The following questions will be addressed: Is museum art education truly a movement which strives to infuse the American culture with a greater appreciation of art? Is there a link to overcoming Marx's key issue of class? How is the movement affecting the Dallas Arts District and to what extent is museum art education being utilized within this forum? Is the emphasis toward museum art education greater in Dallas than in other large cities across the United States, and if so, how has that affected the cities' patrons?
Date: August 2005
Creator: Gormly, Robin K.

The Paradox of Creativity and Business in Feature Hollywood Filmmaking: The Relationship Between Motion Picture Production and Budgeting

Description: This study examines the relationship between movie budgeting and the creative process in Hollywood filmmaking. To understand the effects of this relationship on the creative product, several films are analyzed within the production process where conflicts between the investors and creators are observed. A case study approach is guided by theories of the production of culture, which state that creative products manufactured in the cultural industry must be analyzed in relation to their surrounds society. Findings suggest previous indicators of box office success are becoming primary influences in the filmmaking process. The study also finds that financial standards in Hollywood potentially inhibit innovation among creative participants within a limited Hollywood creative sphere.
Date: August 2005
Creator: Dean, Adam T.

"Time for Teletubbies": Childhood, Child Participation, and the Struggle for Meaning

Description: The children's television program Teletubbies and its concomitant controversies are analyzed along with the media attention surrounding the program. A textual analysis is presented, including the methodologies of narrative theory, semiotics/structuralism, and poststructuralism. The context is also analyzed, using a cultural studies and historical reception approach, in order to chronicle and analyze the show's controversies and elucidate how these arguments have affected reception and interpretation of the show. Following textual and contextual analysis, a social science approach is utilized, reviewing literature and research that supports or refutes the arguments at hand. Finally, the results of a qualitative, ethnographical study are presented in order to include the child's perspectives on the show and inform the larger, cultural issues of childhood.
Date: May 2003
Creator: Cowart, Agatha

Two Fingers: Michael's Struggle

Description: This written thesis gives an account of the creative production of Two Fingers: Michael's Struggle, a twenty-nine minute documentary video that explores the life of Michael Alan Rasch who suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. It explains in detail the process of pre-production, production, and post-production of the documentary. It also discuses the integration of theories applied in the documentary. Two Fingers shows that although Michael has lived with the disease almost his entire life, his perspective and attitude are more about living and enjoying life. Through it, the filmmaker intends the viewer to gain a tremendously important lesson about the human spirit.
Date: December 2001
Creator: Youm, Mi-jung

Memories of Motherland: Gender, Diaspora and National Identity in 1990s Indian Popular Culture

Description: This thesis examines the role of globalization, an open economy and diasporic experiences on the 1990s popular Indian culture, focusing on discourses of gender, national identity and family. Recent Indian beauty queens and international beauty contests are discussed in the context of gendered nationhood in 1990s India. Several popular films of the 1990s are discussed as narratives expressing longing for an extended family and a homogeneous national identity under the leadership of a traditional father figure. In contrast, independent films interrogate the primacy of ethnic and national identity and raise interesting questions about exilic experience. All of these forms of national and popular culture reflect the conflicting and ever-changing anxieties surrounding national identity and the role of women in India.
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Date: May 2002
Creator: Sapre, Manasi

A New Circle

Description: This reflexive documentary film explores the Alabama-Coushatta Indian Tribe of Texas and examines questions of cultural identity. The twenty-one minute film uses footage of cultural events, reservation landscape, photographs, and interviews to bring the viewer into the lives of the Alabama-Coushatta people. The written portion of this thesis details the entire processes of making the film, from the proposal stage to the post-production stage. This includes an examination of the film's evolution from using a proposed ethnographic approach to one less scientific and more personal.
Date: December 2001
Creator: Shutt, Jason