Teaching & Programming


I earned my PhD in Film & Media Studies and American Studies (with a certification in Women and Gender Studies) at Yale University in 2016. I taught film and television at Hollins University from 2016-2019.

Courses taught include Introduction to Film as Art, World Cinema, American Cinema, Television Situation Comedy, Theories of Comedy, Film Noir, Film and Censorship, Film Theory & Criticism, and the Hollywood Star (first-year seminar).

In my classes on film, television, and culture, I demand my students do the kind of analytical work that I strive for in my own writing – namely, to grapple with the tensions that exist within the media we watch and to build interpretative claims rooted in these discoveries. The other question that connects my research, teaching, and academic service is that of audience: how do you know your audience and communicate accordingly? Bringing paradox-driven thinking together with an eye toward rhetorical occasion is the recipe for producing new and vital knowledge, whether you are a first-year in college or a tenured faculty member.

As a tenure-track faculty member, I lectured for large survey courses, managed smaller seminar-style discussions across levels of expertise, advised independent students one-on-one, and devised transparent modes of providing assessment and feedback. (My student evaluations are available here.) I also developed a cross-listing system to expand Hollins’ film course offerings and served as the school-wide chair of the Academic Policy Committee, two roles that together instilled in me the benefits of working collaboratively to build intellectual community.

Exhibits (top to bottom):

(1) (a) Emphasizing the power of close reading and contemplative practice with The Bicycle Thieves (b) Finding contemporary media parallels in an introductory unit on documentary, discussing the power of sound in constructing the “real”

(2) Analyzing Blood Simple (Coen Brothers, USA, 1984) as a self-conscious, “meta” neo-noir

(3) Providing important historical, industrial, and technological context for television’s past, present, and future



Assembling a film program is a lot like putting together a syllabus, except your audience is often anyone who had the wherewithal to leave the house and see a movie. The opportunity to put together a program in a way to bring attention to forgotten texts, bring the rigor of the classroom to an evening or weekend crowd — indeed, to provoke questions in your audience and to generate meaningful conversation, both during and after the event — is a gift; getting to do so within a curious and engaged academic community offers its own set of challenges and rewards.

I was the Director of Programming for the Environmental Film Festival at Yale in 2014 and served as a core programmer for the Yale Film Colloquium, where I spearheaded the “Screen to Screen” series on postwar film and television and provided program notes for screenings of Illusions, The Lusty Men, and Caravaggio, and A Face in the Crowd (all posted to academia.edu). I also co-organized the Curating the Moving Image Conference (Spring 2015).

In Roanoke, I programmed a series of film and speaking events, including co-organized the bell hooks residency at Hollins University (Fall 2017) and a screening and panel discussion of The Revolution Generation (Fall 2018), as well as participating in a talk-back about comedy and mental health at the Grandin Theater.

The Archive Panel  
(L-R: Anthology Film Archives’ John Klacsmann, Yale’s Brian Meacham,
MoMA’s Katie Trainor, me)

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