Undergraduate Program

We offer a major and a minor. And, of course, you can take FMST courses as electives and learn new ways to understand our mediated world.

The FMST major and minor replace, as of fall semester 2014, William and Mary's former majors and minors in Literary amd Cultural Studies (LCST) and Film Studies.

im • por • tant: If you've already declared a major or minor in LCST or LCST/Film, your curricula are posted alongside the major/minor information for FMST. If you have already declared, you have two choices: 1. You can complete your LCST or LCST/Film curriculum and graduate under that program name, or 2. You can consider changing your major or minor to FMST. In either case, we urge you to talk with your major advisor or the FMST director.

Thinking FMST

You are reading a web page. This, of course, is an analogy. You are actually reading this on a glass screen, which is part of a complex electrically powered machine (really a network of machines), which is creating these words using a series of complex codes - in addition to the codes of the Roman alphabet and the general practices and rules of English grammar and usage. (The machine you are using might even have an operating system called Windows, implicitly encouraging you to look through this screen and not at it and the mechanisms and institutions that make it work.)

  • Would you find the content of what we are saying, i.e., the ideas we are trying to convey, different if we had set these words in type, printed it, and sent it to you through the mail? If we wrote the words "by hand"?
  • Would you find the content of what we are saying different if we were literally standing in front of you and speaking these words?
  • Would you find the content of what we are saying different if we made a recording of these words for you? If the recording was audio only, or audio and visual?

Answers to these questions are not simple, and we argue that they are both interesting and carry cultural, social, and aesthetic consequences.

BTW, whose voice do you imagine (or do you imagine one) when you read these words? These words didn't have a single author. So if we were to come to talk to you or make a recording, which one of us would be the voice? Or should we be a chorus?

And, of course, we are not imagining you as a single individual. You are (we imagine) a current student, prospective student, parent, male/female/gender fluid person who could live anywhere on the planet but most likely lives in the United States. We're pretty sure you can read English and have access to a computer, the world wide web, and the skills to use both....