Fantasy, Dreams, and Madness

Elective Courses

CINE 159 - Fantasy, Dreams, and Madness

COML 282 | ENGL 079 | JWST 102 | NELC 159
401 |Nili Gold |TR 1:30-3pm |COLL 318

This course analyzes Hebrew and/or Israeli fiction, poetry and film that feature dreams, fantasy and madness.  The Zionist meta-narrative tells of an active, conscious and rational enterprise of Israeli nation-building. Yet its subversive shadow-side lurks in literary and cinematic nightmares, surrealist wanderings and stories packed with dreams. This tension exists in the Hebrew Literature of the twentieth century and persists in contemporary films and writings that question the sanity of the protagonist and artist alike. Although S.Y.  Agnon, the uncontested master of Hebrew literature, denied ever reading Freud, his works are fraught with dreams and psychoanalytic insight. His literary heirs, Amos Oz and A.B. Yehoshua, the pillars of the Israeli canon, often speak in the symbolic language of the subconscious. Older Israeli films like New Land, as well as newly-released works like Waltz with Bashir, also confront similar issues. Works by Freud, Kafka and Plath are included in the course. There will be 5-6 film screenings; the films are on reserve at Van Pelt for those unable to attend the screenings. The course content changes every year, therefore students may take it for credit more than once.

last updated 06/16/2014 - 1:55pm

Cinema Studies Program
209A Fisher-Bennett Hall ⋅ 3340 Walnut Street ⋅ Philadelphia, PA 19104 ⋅ (215) 898-8782