The MCOM 407/507 syllabus is posted for the fall and our reporting theme for the semester is: urban renaissance.
Wikipedia defines the European Renaissance as a cultural movement and intellectual transformation that “encompassed a flowering of literature, science, art, religion, and politics.”
Like Baltimore, cities across the nation are undergoing urban renaissance, a movement which is focused on improving urban life and driven by the values of sustainability, innovation, community, creativity and social awareness.
I’m loving the way What Weekly Magazine describes its mission in the Baltimore Renaissance: “We believe Baltimore is experiencing a cultural, artistic and intellectual Renaissance that coincides with the global shift in consciousness. … We want to keep that momentum going and encourage each of you to show some civic pride, do good deeds, help your neighbors, create something, support your community, be accountable for your actions and lead by example. Actively giving is a good way to build something.”
Our mission this semester: documenting urban renaissance. Your challenge is to produce a three-part multimedia series on any one of these values:
- Sustainability, like the urban agriculture or local food movements.
- Innovation could include social innovations like the Bnote or local technological innovations.
- Community. An example of this value would include cool grassroots, community-run projects like the Baltimore Free School. I’d love for someone to tackle how communities in other cities are using eminent domain to reclaim blighted properties for community spaces, and how that might take place here.
- Creativity could include arts programs that foster social change or how the Baltimore DIY culture combines social action with self-sufficiency and a rejection of the consumerist culture.
- Social Awareness would include government attempts to address social problems, such as Baltimore City’s progress on its 10-year plan to end homelessness or restore blighted, vacant housing.
See you in September!