2023 SCMS Conference

April 12–15, 2023 • Denver, CO

While virtual versions of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) conference have filled in for the past two years, it's been a staggering four years since film, television, and media scholars have gathered in person for this typically annual major event. Meanwhile, the marked changes in the media landscape over these past four years have given scholars a lot to talk about.

This year in Denver, RTF faculty, students, and alumni will convene to present their latest research, engage in critical dialogues on media studies topics, and network with regarded cinema and media scholars from around the world. Scroll down the page to see many of those scholars, who are listed below.

Special Kudos

On Wednesday, April 12, at 2 pm, SCMS will present Professor Emeritus Thomas Schatz with a Distinguished Career Achievement Award. Schatz will be in conversation with renowned film critic and theoretician Bill Nichols.

In addition to all of this year's great work and Tom's award, we also will be celebrating the election of several RTF-affiliated individuals to the SCMS board. They will be joining
RTF PhDs Courtney Brannon Donoghue (University of North Texas) and Alfred L Martin Jr. (University of Miami). The new board will include:

  • Yeidy Rivero, PhD '00 (President-Elect, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor);
  • Kristen Warner, PhD '10 (Treasurer, Cornell University), replacing outgoing Treasurer and RTF Professor Alisa Perren;
  • Maria Boyd, MA '10 (Member-at-Large, Delaware County Community College); and
  • Current RTF doctoral student Kristina Brüning, who was elected Graduate Student Representative.

Party - Save the Date!

It's been a minute! Please join the UT Austin Department of Radio-Television-Film for our reinstated annual "Back to the Ranch" SCMS Reunion Party with graduate students, alumni, faculty and friends. Catch up and enjoy some light refreshments. We hope to see you there!

Hook 'em!

WHEN: Friday, April 14, at 7 pm
QUESTIONS: noah.isenberg@austin.utexas.eudu

UT RTF scholars scheduled to participate in 2023 SCMS Conference
(partial list)

Faculty | Students | Alumni


SCMS 2023



Mary Beltrán
G10 – Latinx TV -
Representation, Aesthetics, and Authorship

Mirasol Enríquez
B27 – Work / Life (Im) Balance
"The State of Academic Labor in Film and Media Studies"

Shanti Kumar
N11 – Roundtable: India Streaming - Media Assemblages, Public Cultures and the Political

Curran Nault
M2 – Access Aesthetics
“Responsibilities of a Gay Grassroots Critic: A Queer Case for the Inaccessible Archive”

Alisa Perren
K18 – Round Table: Beyond the Internship - Preparing Media Industries Students for the Industry Pipeline

Thomas Schatz (Emeritus)
E1 – The Walt Disney Company at 100
“Disney’s Film-Television Synergies from Disneyland to Disney+”

Suzanne Scott
A1 - Race, Sports, and Fandom
“The Eyes of Texas Are Upon Us: Generational Fandom, Tradition, and Antiracist Activism”

Adrien Sebro
I17 – “Like Sunshine and Rain” - Reconciling joy and pain in Black popular media
“Movin’ on Down”

Lesley Willard (RTF Lecturer)
F2 – Platforming Video Game Studies
“Not That Kind of CM: Reframing Video Game Community Managers as Content Moderators”

Seminar: Canaries in the Content Mine; Internships and/in the Media Industries


Laura Brown (PhD Student)
Chair O3 – Stayin’ Alive
“I thought you were stepping aside for someone younger!: The Sustained Careers of Early American Television Stars”

Kristina Bruening (PhD Student)
C2 – Race and Labor Behind the Screen
“I Have to Speak Up: Actresses’ Agency and
Activism in the Contemporary TV Industry”

Kathy Cacace (PhD Student)
A14 – Humor and Politics
“The Man’s Right, Time to Pay the Piper: Iliza Shlesinger and the Conservative Feminist Rape Joke”

Ash Kinney d’Harcourt (PhD Student)
A24 – Producing and (Re)Imaging Queer and Trans Potentiality
“Rebel with a Cause: The Subcultural Reinvention of Popular Media Iconography through Drag Kinging”

Britta Hanson (PhD Student)
M18 – Pedagogies of Care in the Neoliberal University

Kathryn Hartzell (PhD Student)
C6 - Global TV Studies
Platforms, Audiences, Ratings
"Brand Ambassadors: Selling the English Premier League to India”

Rusty Hatchell (PhD Student)
C21 – Stardom and the Multiverse in Historical and Corporate Transition
The Arrowverse is Dead: Long Live the Arrowverse: Resituating the DC Television Multiverse Amidst Corporate Turmoil”

Paxton Haven (PhD Student)
B20 – Popular Music Stardom in Transition
“In Search of Her ‘main pop girl moment’: Charli XCX’s CRASH and Self-Reflexive Artist-Branding as Industrial Critique”

Katie Hoovestol (MA Student) & Hannah Wold (MA)
F19 – Watching, Fandom, and Critical Response
“Legitimation and Youth Audiences: Critical Receptions of Scream: The TV Series and Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin”

Peter Arne Johnson (PhD Student)
J9 – Life During Neoliberal Wartime
“Burning the Bridge of Bridging the Gap: Approaching Management Scholarship as a Critical Media Industry Scholar”

Hyun Jung Stephany Noh (PhD Student)
C6 – Global TV Studies
Platforms, Audiences, Ratings
“The Development of the Studio System behind K-Drama in the SVOD Era”

Laurel P. Rogers (PhD Student)
M8 – Gender and Race in Online Culture
“A Better Romance than Actual Romance: Purity Culture and Queer Representation in The Untamed Fandom”

Daelena Tinnin (PhD Student)
M14 Music, Feminism, and Femininity
"I Saw Things I Imagined: Black Female Audacity in Solange’s When I Get Home

Andy Wright (PhD Student)
Co-Chair O3 – Stayin’ Alive
“Punching Up: How YouTube micro-celebrities use neoliberal self-branding to stage redemptive journeys”


Ji-Hyun Ahn (PhD)
K12 – Radical politics, media texts, and feminist criticism
“Watching Sporty Women on Television: Female Body and Sports Entertainment Programs in South Korea”

Nick Bestor (PhD)
B10 – Pikachu’s Transmedia Adventures
“Who’s That Pokémon Stakeholder? The Role of Japanese Publishing and ShoPro in Pokémon’s Transnational Success”

Maria Boyd (MA)
E23 – Cinematic Contact Zones, Cultural Appropriation, and Courting New Audiences
“Gloria Gould Presents: MGM’s Campaign to Attract Elite Audiences”

Kevin John Bozelka (PhD)
J6 – Stardom, Authorship, and Musicals
“Fred Waring vs. Louis Jordan: Reading Waring v. WDAS Through the Lens of ‘Sepia’ Musicals”

Selena Dickey (PhD)
E9 – Looking for the Receiver
“Microwave-fed CATV, Small Market Broadcasters, and the Mountain West, 1956-1962”

Courtney Brannon Donoghue (PhD)
E20 – (Re)Creating Experiential Learning in a Pandemic World

Evan Elkins (MA)
F21 – Transnational Streaming Platforms Come of Age
“Title: Middlebrow Taste, Audiences Metrics, and Centrist Politics: Conceptualizing Mass Culture in the Streaming Era”

Ken Feil (PhD)
G6 – Post-Blaxploitation Media
“Wish I had me a best boy’: Black Queer Authorship, the Backstudio Biopic, and Dolemite Is My Name”

Laura E. Felschow (PhD)
O8 – Cooking Up Identity
“I think this place could be so different’: Toxic Masculinity and Classism in FX’s The Bear”

Byron Fong (MA)
H5 – Media Analytics
“Jumping into the Home: The Video Game Jump from the Arcade to the Home Console”

Hollis Griffin (MA)
F11 – Valuing and Evaluating Queer Affect
“Men and #metoo: Leaving Neverland and the Affective Archive of Sexual Trauma”

David Gurney (MA)
Chair A14 – Humor and Politics
“Of Trolls and Snowflakes: Hipster (Post-) Irony and Politicization of Folklore and the Supernatural In 1970s Czechoslovak Cinema”

Jennifer Holt (MA)
J9 – Life During Neoliberal Wartime
“SurveillanceU: The Fight to Kick Big Tech Out of The Classroom”

Charlotte Howell (PhD)
A1 – Race, Sports, and Fandom
“Diaspora United, Shea Butter FC, and the Centering of Black Cybercultures in Women’s Soccer Fan Media”

Kit Hughes
Chair K23 – From Revolutionary to Regressive to Retro
“Maryland Public Broadcasting’s Consumer Survival Kit: Struggling to Make it in the Free Market”

Jacqueline Johnson (MA)
H6 – Black Filmmakers and Generic Interventions in Contemporary Cinema
“Top Five Most Memorable Heartbreaks: Black Rom-Coms in the ‘Post-Romantic Age”

Jennifer Kang (PhD)
D26 – Media Intersections
Re-nationalizing Transnational Korean Television: The Domestic Audience’s Response to Squid Game and Joseon Exorcist”

Jinsook Kim (PhD)
K12 – Radical politics, media texts, and feminist criticism
“A Tale of Two Homosocialities: Gender, Sexuality, and Global Political Economy in Squid Game”

Peter Kovacs (PhD)
M6 – From Radio to TV
“Sullivan is Mercury, Mercury in Sullivan’: Television as a PR tool from brand promotion in the single sponsorship era”

Ben Kruger-Robbins (MA)
F10 – Audiences, Branding, and LGBTQ+ Visibility
“Basic Instinct: CBS’s Historical Marketing Strategies and Discourses of Queer Aging”

Peter Kunze (PhD)
E1 – The Walt Disney Company at 100
“Disney’s Work at Woke Disney: Race and Repair in the Magic Kingdom”

Kayti Lausch (MA)
F10 – Audiences, Branding, and LGBTQ+ Visibility
​‘The Extras Thrown In at Hallmark Nowadays‘: The Conservative Backlash to Hallmark’s Efforts at Queer Inclusivity”

Sara Liao (PhD)
K12 – Radical politics, media texts, and feminist criticism
“Streaming feminism: Women-centered net dramas, global television culture, and feminist textual possibilities”

Mengmeng Liu (MA)
K12 – Radical politics, media texts, and feminist criticism
“Queering the Wuxia Genre: Feminist Imaginations and Queer Desires in Flying Swords of Dragon Gate”

Amanda D. Lotz (PhD)
B23 – Screen Story Strategies in the 21st Century
“New Strategies in Series Storytelling”

Alfred Martin (PhD)
F10 – Audiences, Branding, and LGBTQ+ Visibility

Nick Marx (MA)
C6 – Global TV Studies
“I Think You Should Leave and the Algorithmic Absurdity of Sketch Comedy on Netflix”

Cynthia Meyers (PhD)
Chair M6 – From Radio to TV
“Fairfax Cone’s Magazine Concept: An Adman’s Proposal to Reform 1950s-60s TV”

Paul Monticone (PhD)
F16 – Extra-Filmic Discourses and the Processes of Institutionalization
“The Citizens of Vineland, New Jersey v. The Brothers Warner: Findings from an Early Private-Plaintiff Antitrust Case”

Sarah Murray (MA)
Chair H11 – There Might Be Something Queer Here
“The Soloflex Muscle Machine and the Queer Assemblages of Early Tech Solutionism”

Diane Negra (PhD)
M5 – The Humiliating Uncanny

Kimberly Owczarski (PhD)
C17 – Streaming Ephemera
“Start[ing] New Conversations: Netflix, Tudum, and the Company’s Year of Failure”

Matthew Payne (PhD)
F2 – Platforming Video Game Studies
“Preposterous Platforms of Play: Eugene Jarvis’s Post-Arcade Coin-Op Games”

Seminar: Making Videographic Criticism

Jennifer Petersen (PhD)
Chair H22 – Archives of the (In)Visible
“Animal Authorship: Image, Ownership, and Personhood in the ‘Monkey Selfie’ Case”

Swapnil Rai (PhD)
F21 – Transnational Streaming Platforms Come of Age
“The Dream of Creative Equity: Democratization of Accesses and Gender Parity in India in the Age of Streaming”

Workshop: Managing the Academic Workload

Yeidy M. Rivero (PhD)
L11 – Voicing Latinidad
“Selling ‘Accent-less’ Radio Programs: America’s Production Inc. and Spanish Language Radio During the 1960s”

Nathan Rossi (PhD)
D9 – Borders between Nonfiction and Fiction
“From Netflix to TravelTok: The Persistent Tropicalization of Central America in U.S. Docuseries and Social Media”

Seminar: Making Videographic Criticism

Kevin Sanson (PhD)
E20 – (Re)Creating Experiential Learning in a Pandemic World

Avi Santo (PhD)
J11 – Logistical Nightmares
“Discovering & Maximizing HBO’s Consumer Potential: The Fantasy & Challenges of Brand Consolidation through D2C Platforms”

Bryan Sebok (PhD)
E20 – (Re)Creating Experiential Learning in a Pandemic World

Brett Siegel (PhD)
A1 – Race, Sports, and Fandom
“What Happened to Blocking out the Noise?’: Racial In/Justice as Distraction for NFL Fans in All or Nothing”

Dan Streible (PhD)
G16 – Counter-Archives and Practices of Care

R. Colin Tait (PhD)
J13 – Triggering Allegiance
“No Small Parts: Writing for Actors in Better Call Saul”

Alyxandra Vesy (MA)
D19 – Music Sounds Better With You
“Behind the Music: VH1’s Intergenerational Address Through ‘Contextualized Entertainment”

Jacqueline Vickery (PhD)
F4 – Approaches to Youth, Post(Network) Media, and Coming of Age
“Unpacking the Gendered Discourses of TikTok’s Generational Wars”

Latina Vidolova (MA)
F23 – Media and Audiences
“From Pages to Screen to the Queen’s Ball: Constructing Netflix Identities beyond Streaming”

Jing Wang (PhD)
M11 – Industry Circuits
“Cultural Hybridity in Practice: Chinese Independent Documentary Filmmaking and Transborder Exchanges”

Lessons from Japan and China; Social Media Platforms and Practices Outside of North America;

“Small  Apps, Podcasting, and Social Networks in China”

Kristen Warner (PhD)
E20 – (Re)Creating Experiential Learning in a Pandemic World

Lauren Wilks (MA)
K2 – Race, Labor, and Contemporary Media
“Working the Cracks: Becoming a Multi-Hyphenate Boss in Contemporary U.S. Media Industries”


Elana Wakeman
Sr. Programs & Communications Coordinator