MH: History of Animation

This course will address the history of animation as an art form and an industry. Emphasis will be on key figures, movements, and technologies associated with the field of animation from the pre-silent days until the current explosion in animated features. The class will be primarily devoted to screenings of films and discussions of their importance to the overall history. We will cover the major American studios and studio directors: Tex Avery, Chuck Jones, Bob Clampett, and Dave Fleischer, among others; as well as independent artists such as Don Hertzfeldt, Caroline Leaf, Bill Plympton; and international animation, including Dusan Vukotic, Marcell Jankovics, and Michael Dudok de Wit. The class will also discuss the production process, financing, and marketing of commercial and independent films. We will examine historical trends to help us understand the animation field today and to speculate on the future of animation.