My name is Julie Sanchez, and I’m currently a junior in the College. I’m majoring in Cultural Anthropology and minoring in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies. I’m originally from California. Here on campus, my main extracurricular is a collaborative queer arts group, PennULTRA.
So why am I taking this course? Aside from the obvious reasons that it’s in my minor and fits nicely in my schedule, the answer is twofold. First, I have a vested interest in both queer and feminist issues. Second, taking a film class seems to be the next step in a progression of strange accidents that have defined the last year of my academic career. Last spring I stumbled into a photography seminar, and it more or less completely changed my perception of visual culture, in a way I’m not really sure how to articulate. As a result, last semester I ended up writing a paper for my Methods in Sexuality Studies class related to queer practice in photography. There’s something really fascinating to me in the intersection of queer theory and visual art, which I’m anxious to keep exploring. That said, as much as I love photography, I tend to be most interested in photographic projects that develop or rely on a narrative. Which makes sense, given the fact that, at heart, I’m a (creative) writer above all else, and for me, (fictional) stories are sites of infinite possibility. As such, it seems natural to study film, a visual art in which narrative is essential, fundamental.
I have never taken a film class, at Penn or anywhere else, but I’m really excited. I’m actually taking another cinema class this semester with the anthro department, Mythology and the Movies. It should be interesting (though potentially very confusing, I’m aware) to look at film through two very different critical lenses.
Specifically in regards to this class, I am looking forward to learning more about cinema studies and cinematic critique, watching good movies, and trying out new technology. I’ve never used Twitter, and my Google Maps experience has been limited to getting directions. I’ve used iMovie before to make short videos, though not seriously—just fake book trailers and projects for other classes. Looking over the syllabus, I’ve seen a few of the films listed, but not most of them. I’m intrigued by the range of genres, as well as the diversity of assignments for the course.
All in all, it should be a really great semester. Looking forward to getting to know all of you better,
PS: I have no idea why my post is blue. My attempts to fix it aren’t working, so… I hope it’s not too annoying.