UC Directing in the Field
In Flanders Fields
Course supervisors: Leen Engelen, Rob Rombout and Roel Vande Winkel
This course aims to further develop skills and deepen the knowledge and experience in documentary filmmaking, by focusing on the treatment of historical subjects, with the use of historical documents such as newspapers, private papers, photographs and archival films.
The title of this course is taken from “In Flanders Fields”, a famous poem, written in May 1915, in Belgium, by the Canadian military doctor and artillery commander Major John McCrae. The poem deals with the everyday horror of the First World War I (1914-1948), during which soldiers of many nationalities were deployed in the trench wars. As the title suggests, an important part of this trench warfare was fought in the west of Flanders, where many historic sites and places of remembrance can still be visited.
The course starts with an introductory one-day seminar in Brussels, in which students are introduced to what happened in Belgium during the First World War to take knowledge of different perspectives on the war.
Students then take part in a four-day field trip to the Westhoek region where they will visit important wartime sites and the “In Flanders Fields” museum in Ypres. In working at and in collaboration with the “In Flanders Fields” Museum, the students make their first history-based short documentaries in the course.