Film and television-inspired courses to round out your spring schedule

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The add/drop period for the spring 2023 semester is upon us, and navigating the wide variety of classes at Syracuse University isn’t always easy. Instead of sifting through hundreds of course names and numbers, The Daily Orange Culture Staff has provided a list of electives recommended by students, based on new movies or TV shows.

The Pale Blue Eye
Netflix’s recent release, “The Pale Blue Eye,” takes viewers through a gothic mystery where veteran detective, Augustus Landor (Christian Bale), investigates a flurry of gory murders. In this investigation, Landor meets Edgar Allen Poe (Harry Melling) who enlightens others through his poetry and writing.

HST 386: History of Crime and Society tackles a few themes from this film. It combines forensics, history, law and popular culture, said sophomore Sierra Kaplan.

“Throughout the class, I learned everything, from mafias and the rise of gangsters like Al Capone or Lucky Luciano to how nineteenth century crime developed sensationalized media,” Kaplan said.

Abbott Elementary
Abbot Elementary has broken out as one of the most popular and impactful television shows in recent memory. The sitcom takes place in a Philadelphia school and follows the lives of the teachers and staff as they balance their fiery passion for teaching with a school district that is much less interested.

The comedy unpacks serious social issues, like underfunded urban schools, and SOC 102: Social Problems addresses these topics. In this course, students learn about current social problems that take place within the United States and how they relate to individuals and the community, said sophomore Zach Wichman.

“The class was eye-opening, as everything we discussed had current ramifications on our society and how we as people function,” Wichman said.

Ginny & Georgia
Anyone who has been on TikTok lately has heard of what users on the platform have called this generation’s “Gilmore Girls” — mother-daughter duo “Ginny & Georgia.” The main issues of the show focus on family problems, but it also tackles intense topics such as racial identity and belonging.

Whether or not the new season made you Team Georgia or Team Ginny, SOC 101: Introduction to Sociology can offer insight to anyone who wants to understand their flawed motivations. Sophomore Megan Kane said the course is accessible and foundational for students with no prior knowledge of the subject.

“To this day, this is one of my favorite classes I’ve taken at Syracuse,” Kane said. “It was so interesting and I had no background in sociology, so I enjoyed it.”

Though SOC 101 doesn’t have the same thriller twists and turns as the new hit show, the class does offer a chance for students to start learning about the sociological and societal processes that make people, like Ginny and Georgia, tick.

Glass Onion
With the recent release of Netflix’s “Glass Onion” at the end of 2022, Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) is once again establishing his presence on screen. The film detective, who has now used his perception and clue-collecting skills to solve two murders, frequently monologues as he details how the murderer went about the crime and how they were caught.

Any students who want to build up their public speaking skills to rival those of Blanc’s may be interested in CRS 325: Presentational Speaking, taught this semester by Professor Lynn Greenky. For senior Kwadwo Osei-Poku, the skills learned in CRS 325 are widely applicable to a variety of fields and industries, and even to workplace success.

“That’s definitely an important class for a lot of majors no matter what field you’re working in, because you should know how to first speak with other people personally, then be able to present things and ideas,” Osei-Poku said.

Film and television-inspired courses to round out your spring schedule

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