Critical Studies courses develop critical, multidisciplinary perspectives on a wide range of contemporary cultural issues. The Critical Theory A (CS-300) and Critical Theory B (CS-301) sequence must be taken at SFAI, and is completed in the junior or senior year.
Critical Theory A provides a strong foundation in the theoretical projects that most contribute to an analysis of the contemporary world, including semiotics, Marxism, psychoanalysis, post structuralism, feminist theory, and postcolonial theory. While these modes of critical inquiry greatly enhance understandings of social life in the broadest possible sense, the course focuses on analyzing multiple forms of cultural production including visual images, various genres of writing, and the “texts” of commercial culture. The course develops written and verbal analytic skills with the goal of enriching the quality of students’ thought, discourse, and artistic production.
Critical Theory B is a special topics course that builds upon the theoretical foundations of Critical Theory A. The topics change each semester; recent courses include Technoscience and Environmental Justice; Theories in Third Cinema; and Trauma, Resilience, and Creative Practice.