FS30230 Cinema and the City: New York

Academic Year 2021/2022

This module focuses on the multifaced relationship between cities and cinema, drawing on the rich interdisciplinary scholarship on the topic that has been produced over the last 20 years or so, examining how cinema represents cities and how cities have served as sites of film production and film culture, situating cinema as a spatial form, continually shaped by and responsive to urban change. It uses New York as a case study, given its cinematic prominence, but will also provide skills and theoretical and historical frameworks to bring to other urban contexts. The module is organised historically, from New York’s role in the development of cinema—as a subject and a production centre—to the relationship between cinema and urban modernity, the construction of New York in the Hollywood studio system, the impact of postwar suburbanisation and urban decline, up to more contemporary issues such as globalisation and gentrification. The module will encourage students to think about how film studies and urban studies can speak to each other and how film studies methodologies (e.g. textual analysis, film history) can be adapted to the study of cinema and the city.

Show/hide contentOpenClose All

Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

● Develop an in-depth understanding of the history of New York on/and film
● Engage in major critical debates in urban film studies and identify key points of contact between film studies and urban studies
● Demonstrate ability to analyse film texts in relation to urban geography, history and theory
● Produce comprehensive and relevant individual research
● Demonstrate ability to discuss complex ideas in class and in written assignments

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning


Seminar (or Webinar)






Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Seminar involving elements of lecture, discussion (including student-led small group discussion), close textual analysis 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: Final essay 3,000 words Coursework (End of Trimester) n/a Graded No


Assignment: mapping exercise Week 7 n/a Graded No


Continuous Assessment: essay proposal Throughout the Trimester n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Autumn No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Not yet recorded.