Moving Image Studies

The doctoral program in Moving Image Studies is an exciting, new (begun in 2001) program in the Department of Communication. It is specifically designed to provide students with the conceptual and methodological tools to study the complex and vastly expanded moving image environment of the 21st century, where the boundaries separating cinema, television, and new media are breaking down. Moving Image Studies is an outgrowth of cinema studies, television studies, new media studies, cultural studies, and critical theory. Many of our core seminars are designed to cut across media boundaries (by examining how models, paradigms, and methods are problematized and enriched as we move across specific media); while other seminars are devoted to intensive examination of problems within a specific media formation.

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The doctorate in Moving Image Studies is thus designed to give students a solid foundation in a specific moving image medium (whether cinema, television, or new media), while at the same time giving them the preparation and the confidence to research and write about moving images wherever they circulate. Our program encourages innovative new work that challenges existing paradigms of media study, that is theoretically rigorous, and aware of historical and cultural specificities.

Our doctoral students are highly active in the professional organizations in our field. Last year, 10 of our doctoral students had papers accepted for presentation in the competitive Society for Cinema and Media Studies conference, while many others presented papers at the National Communication Association conference, the Flow conference (on television and new media), the World Picture conference (on critical theory and the image), and several others.

The city of Atlanta, a major world media center, offers students in the Moving Image Studies program a wealth of opportunities. The High Museum regularly programs cutting-edge series in world cinemas, while annually the GSU Department of Latin American studies mounts a week-long conference which includes a festival of new Latin American cinema. The Moving Image Studies program maintains close ties with both CNN and Turner, both invaluable resources for students doing research in television industries, history, or global media flows. Nearby Emory University is home to the Atlanta Institute for Psychoanalysis, while Georgia Tech has cutting edge research programs in digital culture and gaming. (Students in the Moving Image Studies program may opt to take a small number of elective courses from these universities.)