Film Studies Department

Filed in Memories

I’d stumbled into the School of English & American Studies’ Film Studies Department by accident.

Towards the end of the second Prelim term, we were told to select a Minor subject to go with our Major. I didn’t really fancy either History or Philosophy, and said no thanks, I’ll just focus on my Major. But no, I was told, I had to declare a Minor.

Besides History and Philosophy, there was a third possibility to do a Minor in. Film Studies. UEA’s School of English & American Studies actually had a Film Studies Department. I had no idea what it entailed and went to check up on the department’s course offerings, and learned that these included studying film history and other stuff related to the cinema.

I can do this, I found myself thinking. After all, I’d spent Saturday nights in the cinema during my childhood – not with friends, but with my family, my parents having taken us to see movies as a refuge from the communal home shared with my father’s brothers and families – so that should qualify me to declare Film Studies as my Minor.

But I wasn’t automatically accepted into the Film Studies Department. Since I was a latecomer to it, not having indicated Film Studies on my application form, I was asked to submit a film review of any movie. That evening after receiving the assignment, I went down to Lecture Theatre 1 (turned campus cinema on Wednesday evenings and during weekends) and watched The Jewel of the Nile to write the film review on. Shortly after submitting the assignment, I was told I’d been accepted to do a Minor in Film Studies.

I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but it was going to be one of the best and most enjoyable times of my three years at UEA.

(to be cont’d … )