Fall 2020 - CMNS 310 E100

Media and Modernity (4)

Class Number: 7010

Delivery Method: Distance Education


  • Course Times + Location:

    Th 7:30 PM – 10:20 PM

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 16, 2020
    8:00 AM – 8:00 AM
    TAKE HOME-EXAM, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    Two of CMNS 210, 221, 240.



An examination of the social and cultural influences of media on western social thought with particular reference to the emergence of the concept of modernity. This includes a review of nineteenth and early twentieth century criticisms of modernity associated with romanticism, Marxism, cultural conservatism, fascism, and non-Western social thought.


This course will examine the social, cultural, and political roles of media in relation to “modernity” in local and global contexts. The course is devoted to introducing a range of school of thoughts that interrogate how media are shaping and are shaped by modern societies. School of thoughts include Cultural Studies, Frankfurt School, Modernism and Postmodernism, Feminisms, Political Economy of Communication, Critical Development Studies and Communication, Technology Studies, Social Movement and Media, and so forth. Through different conceptual and theoretical perspectives and various empirical studies, students will learn how media and information technologies have evolved and developed in the past century and have reinforced and/or transformed the existing power structures and relations.


  • Class Participation and Attendance 15%
  • Presentation 20%
  • Midterm Test 20%
  • Essay 25%
  • Final Test (In-Class) 20%


The School expects that the grades awarded in this course will bear some reasonable relation to established university-wide practices with respect to both levels and distribution of grades. In addition, the School will follow Policy S10.01 with respect to Academic Integrity, and Policies S10.02, S10.03 and S10.04 as regards Student Discipline. [Note: as of May 1, 2009, the previous T10 series of policies covering Intellectual Honesty (T10.02), and Academic Discipline (T10.03) have been replaced with the new S10 series of policies.]


A minimum 2.25 CMNS CGPA and 2.00 overall CGPA, and approval as a communication student is required for entry into most communication upper division courses.



Course readings will be provided on Canvas.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in fall 2020 will be conducted primarily through remote methods. There will be in-person course components in a few exceptional cases where this is fundamental to the educational goals of the course. Such course components will be clearly identified at registration, as will course components that will be “live” (synchronous) vs. at your own pace (asynchronous). Enrollment acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes. To ensure you can access all course materials, we recommend you have access to a computer with a microphone and camera, and the internet. In some cases your instructor may use Zoom or other means requiring a camera and microphone to invigilate exams. If proctoring software will be used, this will be confirmed in the first week of class.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112).