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Hollywood Romantic Comedy (FI324)


The romantic comedy is one of the most derided – yet enduringly popular – Hollywood genres. Time and again, critics have predicted the ‘death’ of the romantic comedy, but the genre has survived, against a contextual backdrop of shifting ideas of romantic love, gender, sexuality and the concept of the couple. In this module, we take the ‘rom com’ seriously, exploring its conventions, aesthetics, history and sexual politics through a diverse screening programme. You’ll explore, in chronological order, several ‘cycles’ of romantic comedy, from screwball to contemporary American indie cinema. Readings and seminars will equip you with critical frameworks and approaches to get to the heart of the genre’s conventions, aesthetics and form.




Module Resources

Module Outline

Course materials

Module Leader


Dr. James MacDowell