ST- Alien Encounters

Subject Name: 
Film Studies
Course Number: 
UMass Amherst
Could extraterrestrial life exist in the cosmos? Scientists say yes, possibly on billions of planets in our galaxy alone. In this class, we will examine the international cinema of alien encounters and explore how these films envision the alien other. How do these films both reflect and shape our own experience of "the alien" or the unknown "other"? Since the beginning of cinema, the figure of the alien has visited the big screen with its promise of otherworldly wonders and its threat of unthinkable perils. This course will explore how alien encounters reflect the haunting of historical realities (such as European voyages of discovery, conquest, and colonization) as well as contemporary issues, such as international conflict (war or global migration), questions of identity (race, gender, sexuality), and the power and perils of emerging technologies (nuclear weapons, artificial intelligence, space travel). Imagining encounters with intelligent beings beyond our own cultural and ideological sphere provides powerful new perspectives on what we think we know about the world, about ourselves, and about others. UMass Amherst Undergraduate Certificate Categories: III, V
Linked Course: 
Multiple required components--lab and/or discussion section. To register, submit requests for all components simultaneously.
Instructor Permission: 
Permission is required for interchange registration during the add/drop period only.
Schedule #: 

Course Sections

ST- Alien Encounters
Sect # Credits Instructor(s) Instructor Email Meeting Times Location
01AA 0.0 TH 1:00PM 1:50PM Integ. Lrng Center S404