Graduate Student, PhD Program
Afropessimism and the libidinal economy of desire in U.S. cinemas, Sex Work, Labor and Alienation, Liberation Theology, Queer Theory, Critical Theory, Oral Tradition, Indigenous Narratology, Decolonial Aesthetics, Social Cinema of the Cppressed, Hip Hop, ethnomusicology and cinematic temporality
Education and Training:
M.F.A. in Cinema Arts & Sciences: Directing at Columbia College of Chicago
B.A. Mass Communication: Broadcasting Xavier University of Louisiana
Darren's work traces colonial modernity's grasp on the historical development of cinematic narrative forms, Western constructions of drama and audience readings of human agency. By engaging subjugated storytelling epistemologies, his research interrogates the history/field of aesthetic reasoning as a tool of hegemonic domination. This work unpacks the correlation between industrialized exploitative labor relations in U.S. studio filmmaking, the ideological rhetoric of auteurism and colonial logics of “progress”. As such, they seek to model an alternative pedagogical framework for narrative filmmaking through a reconsideration of authorship, time, spatial continuity, and film set dynamics in relation to theories of “play.” This model is predicated on formal strategies emerging from 20th century Black American musical traditions, particularly Jazz and Hip Hop. Darren seeks to materialize this model via a participatory production centering the racialized sex trade of New Orleans. Using the black cinematic vernacular of Tik Tok, Vine, and music videos, Darren interrogates the process of black masculinites constructed through the intersections of labor, capitol, desire, mythmaking and violence via African Diasporic self imaging.