CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Feb. 29, 2000
UI creates new department of cinema and comparative literature
IOWA CITY, Iowa Beginning Fall 2000, the University of Iowa College
of Liberal Arts will add courses and programs in film studies to the comparative
literature program, resulting in a new department of cinema and comparative
The new department will include all the faculty members from the current
comparative literature program as well as several faculty who focus on film
studies and on film and video production.
The department will offer a B.A. in comparative literature and a B.A. in
cinema, as well as undergraduate minors in both those areas of study. Graduate
programs in the new department will include master's and doctoral degrees
in comparative literature and in film studies and Master of Fine Arts degrees
in both translation studies and in film and video production.
University policy is to allow current majors the option of completing the
degree to which they were admitted or to change to the new degree and department.
Frederick Antczak, associate dean for academic programs in the College of
Liberal Arts, said programs offered by the new department will complement
those offered by other departments, including American studies, English, communication
studies, journalism, and the foreign language and literature departments.
"Although we expect a large number of students to be attracted to the
new programs, we also know that students interested in media studies will
continue to earn degrees from the department of communication studies, the
School of Journalism and other units," he said. "We hope that interdisciplinary
activities and opportunities will continue, and even increase, as a result
of this new configuration."
Steve Ungar, chairman of the comparative literature program, said the primary
benefit for students of the new configuration will be increased access to
courses that cut across traditional disciplines. For example, students majoring
in comparative literature will also have opportunities to study visual media,
and students studying film will be able to enroll in courses in literary theory.
Ideally students will be exposed to a full range of areas of study in the
new department, including comparative literature, translation studies, film
study, film and video production, and theory, criticism and interarts studies,