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Professor Susan Ryan collaborates on scholarly essays on Academy-Ward winning filmmaker, Barbara Kopple

Susan Ryan, Associate Professor of Communication Studies, recently co-edited (with Jeff Jaeckle) the first collection of scholarly essays on Academy-Ward winning filmmaker, Barbara Kopple. In ReFocus: The Films of Barbara Kopple (University of Edinburgh Press, 2019), a range of international scholars trace Kopple’s career to date, analyzing her contributions in the contexts of funding, style, production and reception, and examining her films’ interrogation of social class using the lenses of gender, sexuality, and race. Two of her early documentaries, Harlan County USA and American Dream, not only won the Oscar for best documentary, but are foundational within documentary studies.

The collection has already started to garner praise within the documentary community. In a recent review in Documentary magazine, published by the International Documentary Association, it was noted that “there is no doubt that this is a scholarly endeavor, and it should be a welcome addition to the bookshelves of film schools, film scholars and film aficionados alike.”

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