About the symposium

May 23-24, 2017, Colby College, Waterville ME

MCFLAC Symposium 2: Revolutions

The second-annual two-day symposium, devoted to media, communication and film studies programs housed at small liberal arts colleges (“MCFLAC”), will be held at Colby College in Waterville, ME. The symposium will bring together faculty from existing programs at liberal arts colleges for two days of resource sharing, student-work showcases, workshops, and panel sessions.

The purpose of the symposium is to gather together faculty from a diverse range of SLAC programs to compare curricular models, discuss the challenges and opportunities of teaching media in the liberal-arts context, and explore establishing an association of liberal arts college programs in media, film, and communication. Such an association might support a resource- and curriculum-sharing web presence, as well as sponsor periodic gatherings of faculty in follow-up symposia.

The first symposium of Media, Communication, and Film Studies Programs at Liberal Arts Colleges (MCFLAC) was held exactly a year ago, at Muhlenberg College. Our main interest was to provide a forum for discussing curricular models and sharing pedagogical strategies. But we also took the opportunity to explore if there was interest in founding an organization. Participants responded to this question with an overwhelming “yes” and MCFLAC was officially born. We founded a steering committee, principally tasked with overseeing subsequent symposia.

Our vision for this year’s gathering was to build off the momentum of last year while also addressing emerging challenges we face within our increasingly polarized country where the inherent value of the liberal arts is no longer a given, but rather, something we are forced to defend. With this political climate in mind, and in keeping with Colby College’s Center for the Arts and Humanities year-long focus on the topic of “Revolutions” (broadly conceived) we now come together around this theme. (Check out our call for papers here)

Beginning with our keynote provocation, given by Patricia R. Zimmermann, and continuing with papers, presentations, and workshops, over these next two days we will consider the following: challenges of teaching revolutions; revolutionary pedagogy as/and revolutionary praxis; the revolutionary potential of institutional assessment strategies; and much more. Furthermore, we believe that within this space, and in the virtual space that MCFLAC occupies, lies the revolutionary potential to nurture connections between and among our all-too-often-siloed disciplines through our shared commitment to the liberal arts.

— Beth Corzo-Duchardt and Chelsea Wessels

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Symposium Organizers

Beth Corzo-Duchardt (Muhlenberg College) and Chelsea Wessels (Colby College).