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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


The World in a Frame: Introducing Culture Through Film

Gerald Duchovnay.

In our current global business and social environment, an understanding of how individuals are shaped by their cultures and how they communicate are useful in understanding and dealing with others. It also aids in better understanding of ourselves and what we value. Knowledge of other cultures is becoming a necessity in the workplace. Knowledge of other cultures can be practical as well as financially and intellectually rewarding.

Unfortunately, some students may have never left Texas, and others may have never left the United States. Some may never want to interact with individuals from other cultures. Others may have already done so and may want to continue to do so. The focus of "The World in a Frame" exams an academic offering on looking at and talking about diverse cultures through their reflections in film and other texts. The idea is not to say whether one country or particular culture is better than another but to consider how (and if) movies serve as ambassadors of culture and how (and if) they communicate aspects of particular cultures.

The presentation, then, will examine how and what we read and how we see, and how those texts mesh with intercultural communications. The presentation will discuss what is done in one course in a remote area of Texas introduces interactive activities, writing assignments, and readings and film texts, as well as how the class benefits from diversity among faculty, staff and students to make the concepts and texts come alive. In a post-9/11 environment in the United States, this kind of course is essential if we are to strive to better understand diversity as we bring the world into the university classroom.


Gerald Duchovnay  (United States)
Head and Professor
Department of Literature and Languages
Texas A&M University-Commerce

Gerald Duchovnay is Head and Professor of the Department of Literature and Languages, where he teaches courses in film studies, literature, and writing. He is the editor of Post Script: Essays in Film and the Humanities, and international film publication and the author of Humphrey Bogart: A Bio-Bibliography.

  • Film
  • Diversity
  • Culture

(30 min Conference Paper, English)