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Title: Rhetoric of Sitcoms
Course Section Number: RHE-270-01
Department: Rhetoric
Description: Whether it's The Office, Blackish, or Schitt's Creek, popular situation comedies (sitcoms) provide viewers an escape from reality and a chance to laugh. But how else might they function? How might they influence viewers' perceptions of the people and situations they depict? How do sitcoms enable or prevent social change? As Joanne Morreale writes in Critiquing the Sitcom, "[S]itcoms both incorporate and contain change; they both address and prevent political action, and they may be read as both conservative and progressive forms, sometimes simultaneously" (xii). In this class, students will study how the sitcom genre reinforces or critiques stereotypical representations of race, gender and sexuality, and economic status, and how sitcoms have weighed in on related political issues. We will study primarily U.S. sitcoms over time as they aired on broadcast and cable television and, more recently, on streaming services. Students will produce several short papers and projects, consisting both of academic rhetorical analysis and creative endeavors. They will need access to Netflix and Hulu.
Credits: 1.00
Start Date: January 17, 2022
End Date: May 7, 2022
Meeting Information: 01/18/2022-05/05/2022 Lecture Tuesday, Thursday 01:10PM - 02:25PM, Fine Arts Center, Room S206
Faculty: Abbott, Jenn

Course Status & Cross-Listings

Cross-list Group Capacity: 20
Cross-list Group Student Count: 20
Calculated Course Status: CLOSED
Section Name/Title Status Dept. Capacity Enrolled/